Hans-Ulrich Henning founded the choir in 1979 together with pupils of the Christophorus School in Versmold. Key competency in the arts lies at the centre of the schools education system of the "Christian Association of Youth Villages" sponsor. The choir, with six hours of rehearsals, professional vocal training and frequent week-long choir camps, enjoys exceptionally good opportunities for development. Thus, it is not surprising that the choir has won numerous first prizes in national and international competitions, amongst them the Grand Prix in Olomous / Czech Republic in 1993.
Its numerous choral partnerships
feature bilateral projects, like for example the German-Latvian performance of
"Miserere" by G. Donizetti in the Riga Cathedral. The choir has
cooperated with WDR (West German Broadcasting Corporation) for many years, e.g.
with the world premiere of a choral jazz piece, and frequently participates in
its Christmas concerts. In 1985 and 2002 the choir was a finalist in the German
Choral Competition; in 1997 it represented Germany at the first International
Youth Choir Festival in the cultural capital Thessaloniki. In 2001 the choir
was awarded the highly remunerative "Bruno-Kleine-Grant" for
exemplary and lasting youth work.
In 2002, within the framework of the AMJ (Working Group for Music and the Young) project "Composers compose for children's and youth choirs", it gave the world premiere of a piece by the Munich composer Max Beckschäfer. In 2004 the choir gave a guest performance in Kaunas in Lithuania as the only amateur ensemble at the "IX Pazaislio Muzikos Festivalis".
In 2006 the choir was selected for the "6th International Youth Chamber-Choir-Meeting Usedom", and in 2007 they represented Germany in Aberdeen, Scotland, at the world-largest Youth Culture Festival "WORLD YOUTH FESTIVAL OF ARTS".
The programs of the Christophorus Youth Chamber Choir include sacral and secular choir pieces from the Renaissance to the modern music as well as sophisticated arrangements of the light music - from a cappella to the pieces accompanied by the orchester. The vocal diversity confirms that at all times and in all places the singing is accorded a special social value - in line with the choir motto: "Singing is breathing, breathing is living!"
The spiritual repertoire includes compositions to praise God: from "Exultate Domino" by Scarlatti (16th century) to the modern "Cantate Domino" by Miskinis or "O be joyful" by Rutter. The secular literature choice is also characterized by the diversity of styles and periods of the choir music and invites to listen and compare: a madrigal "Now is the month of maying" by Morley and "The slow spring" by the Dane John Hoybye. Or a different representation of "Zigeunerleben" by Schumann and Kodaly. The internationality of the choir shapes its repertoire; pieces from many different countries are performed in their original languages!
Choir director Hans-Ulrich Henning
Choir director Hans-Ulrich Henning made his first choir experience between 1961 and 1969 in the boy's choir of the Stiftkantorei Gütersloh, studied from 1969 to 1974 school music at the University of Music and Drama in Hannover (choir and orchestra directing with Prof. Heinz Hennig).
Between 1975 and 1980, vocal studies with Prof. Peter Ziethen followed at the College for Music Detmold, which were successfully completed with the federal singing teacher examination.
Further experiences: Soloist work as tenor in church music context as well as in the renowned vocal quartet DROPS.
Choir directing assistantship and voice teacher for several oratorios choirs, director of the Collegium Cantorum Gütersloh and of the CJD Orchestra, leader of workshops for choir directors, jury member for ‘Jugend musiziert’ and for the ‘Berliner Festspiele’. Implementation of the ‘artistic branch’ at the academic high school of the Jugenddorf-Christophorus School Versmold.