Concordia St. Paul News

June 24, 2016

Christus Chorus Experiences Lutheran History on European Tour

Concordia University’s Christus Chorus recently completed its fifth international tour since 2000, performing throughout Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic. Led by CSP Music Department Chair Dr. David Mennicke, the entourage of 47 people, including 34 students, toured the three nations May 9-23.

Singing primarily in venues ranging from medium-sized “parish” churches to cathedral-sized buildings, Christus also performed 135 meters below the earth’s surface in the Wieliczka Salt Mines near Krakow, Poland. When they weren’t performing concerts, the group was able to explore and learn about the cities in which they visited.

“The unique thing about a choir tour is that the students get to make music in these historic places and share it as a gift with the people who now live there,” Dr. Mennicke said. “Students also get a hands-on perspective of history and the broader world, seeing and walking and living in the places where the history they have read about actually took place.”

According to Dr. Mennicke some other highlights of the trip to “Lutherland” included a tour of Wartburg castle (Germany), which included singing in its Great Hall, performing for a packed house of tourists at the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany, and singing music by Bach in the Thomaskirche in Leipzig, Germany.

“For musicians, these tours offer an unparalleled means to share music to appreciative audiences in stunning performance spaces beyond what they can experience at home.” Dr. Mennicke said.

Christus Chorus has toured abroad every four years since 2000. Past trips include Poland (2000), Germany/Czech Republic (2004), Ghana, Africa (2008), and South Korea (2012). The next international tour will occur in 2020.

To see photos from the tour please visit the Concordia music department’s Facebook page.