Introduction

Viipurin Lauluveikot was founded in 1897 and is one of the oldest male choirs in Finland.  We are celebrating our 120 years in 2017 with numerous performaces, 120 year anniversary concerts in Musiikkitalo as well a 5 concert North American tour. It is our pleasure to bring joy and unity to the world through music and singing. We are proud of our history, our leadership, present and past, and the singers themselves.

Mrs. Jenni Haukio, the first Lady of Finland and spouse of Finland’s President Sauli Niinistö is the protector of our 120 anniversary of our choir.

IMG 5671 WebHistory and Values

The original name was Wiborgs Sångarbröder but was translated to Finnish in 1919, the official name being Viipurin Laulu-Veikot (w.s.b). After the wars in 1945, Viipurin Lauluveikot settled to Helsinki. During the journey from Viipuri to Helsinki, we were able to save an original Steinway piano from 1899 which is still in active use today.

The values and basis for the choir come from the direct and straightforward attitudes of Carelians, as well as the patriotic spirit and the ability to unite different cultures with music & songwriting. These aspects of the choir have been reflected throughout our concert repertoire. The strongest driving force of our choir is that we not only cherish the old but also create new Carelian culture and musical legacy.

Concerts

Viipurin Lauluveikot have been actively organizing concerts such as the traditional advent and spring concerts throughout the years. We have also been on concert tours and choir competitions.

The first church concert was organized in 1928 at the Church of Viipuri where the solo singers at the time were Emil Svartström as tenor and Bruno Stenberg on violin. After coming to Helsinki (1945), Viipurin Lauluveikot have had our advent concert annually at The Church of Johannes, on the first advent Sunday, since 1953 – for 64 years. These concerts have been accompanied by many top finnish singers and/or organ players.

Most recently we performed two sold out 120 year anniversary concerts in the finnish venue for performing music – Musiikkitalo on May 22, 2017. Both concerts received a standing ovation form our audience. We can proudly state to be in the forefront of the finnish choir scene.

Our repertoire consists of traditional male choir, as well as popular entertainment styled songs.

Travels

The choir has traveled abroad on a number of occations. Destinations have included U.S.A, Canada, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Spain, Austria, England, Japan, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland and Russia to name a few.

Our first concert outside of Finland was in 1909 in Germany. Choir has traveled to St. Petersburg a total of eight times while Finland was an autonomous part of Russia, most recent being in 1917 when the revolution was at its peak. After that we didn't visit until 2012. By then Finland had gained independence.

Recordings

There are a total of 13 recordings of the Viipurin Lauluveikot. “Chirstmas and spiritful songs (1970)

Ladoga (1975), Memories of Karjala.. (1984), Singing to God (1992), Victorious Cheer (1997), Viipurin Lauluveikot 100th Anniversary (1997), Advent (2003) We haven't Forgotten (2005) The Families Tower Rises (2007) Songs to our Country (2010) Oh Karjala (2012). Some of these recordings are still available on our website

Practice

There used to be a practice space for the choir in Viipuri close to the castle of Viipuri. After the wars we found a new practice space in Helsinki. Now it resides in the Karjala House in Helsinki.

The Choir received the Pro Carelia Award in June of 2009.

Pro Karelia mitali 1 web