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associationmembership information mailing listthey say about us links FONDAZIONE PRO MUSICA E ARTE SACRA

The International Association Friends of Sacred Music, now Associzione Internazionale Amici della Fondazione Pro Musica e Arte Sacra, was founded in January 1996 by Sen. Dr. Dr. h.c. Hans-Albert Courtial, a lover and promoter of sacred music, who after over 40 years of' experience in favour of choral music in first place, decided to set up a structure able to manage with efficiency, determination, and professionalism an important heritage of thousands satisfied choirs from all over the world and a devoted Roman audience consisting of about 3000 friends of sacred music.

The idea of setting up this Association, has mainly derived from the need of creating a valid artistic and organizational support to the ever growing international choral and orchestral groups, wishing to perform in the field of sacred music in the most beautiful churches and cathedrals of Italy.

Choirs from all over the world will have the chance to hold concerts in the marvellous setting of the magnificent Italian churches, in particular in the heart of the Eternal City, to make the Roman audience familiar with the choral music of their country, and to perform some of the most famous works of international choral literature. For each choir this experience will surely be a special opportunity foro personal enrichment, an extraordinary artistic stimulus, and above all a reward to their enthusiasm and dedication towards sacred music.

The Amici della Fondazione Pro Musica e Arte Sacra, which is under the artistic direction of Msgr. Pablo Colino, Emeritus Director of Music at St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican, takes care of all arrangements concerning the concerts, including all technical and legal aspects and public relations.

In particular:
- the choice and reservation of the concert venue in every Italian town (in Rome the concerts generally takeplace in the Basilica of Sant'Ignazio Church in the heart of the town);

announcements of the concerts in the most important local and national newspapers and magazines;

- issues related to the authorizations by the competent civil and religious authority;

the printing and posting of the bills announcing the concert;

- the printing of concerts programmes which will be distributed to the audience;

assistance by specialized staff during the concert.

On request:
- rental of every kind of music instruments;

organizations of a local orchestra of soloists, etc.;


photographer and recording audio and/or video.

The association is also able to organize that the choirs could to sing the liturgy at the High Mass in St. Peter's Basilica and in other churches in Rome and in Italy, and to participate with a song in the Holy Father's General Audience.

The choirs interested in holding concerts should submit their request per email to the International Association Friends of Sacred Music, together with a short biography of the choir and of the conductor in English, a recent recording, and the planned musical program. The material should arrive, at the latest, two months before the day of performance.

Furthermore the Association promotes three international choir competitions, parades,  and an International Music Choir Festival, organized by Courtial International, Throughout the years, they have gained a great appreciation thus reaching a wider and wider international level, trusting in the unifying power of music to encourage the relations between different cultures, traditions, and people.

The International Choir Festival "Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina" is named after the famous composer of sacred music. The competition takes place in Palestrina, native country of this famous artist. Then the Festival continues in Rome, the Eternal City and capital of sacred music.

The International Choir Festival "Orlando di Lasso" provides for a large number of different categories that correspond to the respective levels and repertoires of the participating choirs. There are special categories for folksong choirs which perform exclusively folklore or traditional music typical of their home country as well as categories for choirs with a repertoire of classical music, gospels, and spirituals.

The purpose of the Choral Music Festival "Europe... and its songs" is to promote the European folksongs. Choirs from all over the world, which have folksongs of their home country in their repertoire, can participate in this competition which takes place in the beautiful town of Barcelona (Spain).

The Association promotes the organization of parades in the centre of Rome and of other Italian towns: extraordinary events where folklore, music, and joy will be protagonists. It is an event created for bands, which will have the possibility to bring their music right into the heart of the Eternal City.

The International Music Choir Festival is an event which allows the meeting and the cultural exchange of choirs from all over the world. It takes place in the heart of the Eternal City with concerts in the most beautiful and important Roman churches and with open-air singing in the streets of the centre.

Furthermore the Association support the Fondazione Pro Musica e Arte Sacra in its activities and events, in particular on the occasion of the The International Festival of Sacred Music and Art, which takes place in Rome every year with the participation of the Wiener Philharmoniker.

Contact us! Don't miss the opportunity to join our Association to perform with your choir your own concert in Italy and to take part in our international competitions!
President and Founder
Sen. Dr. Dr. h.c. Hans-Albert Courtial
Artistic Director
Msgr. Pablo Colino
Emeritus Director of Music of
St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican
Mons. Valentino Miserachs Grau Emeritus Rector of Pontifical Institute
of Sacred Music
Chapel Master of the Basilica
of S. Maria Maggiore
S.E.R. Card. Zenon Grocholewski S.C.V.
Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education
S.E.R. Card. Francesco Marchisano S.C.V.
President Emeritus of the Labour Office of the Apostolic See
President Emeritus of the Permanent Commission for the Care of Historical and Artistic Monuments of the Holy See
President Emeritus of the Pontifical Council for Culture
President Emeritus of the Pontifical Commission for the Cultural Heritage of the Church and of the Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archeology
S.E.R. Card. Pio Laghi
Emeritus Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education
S.E.R. Card. John Patrick Foley
Grand Master
Equestrian order of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem
S.E.R. Mons. Piero Marini
Pontifical Committee for International Eucharistic Congresses
titular Archishop of Martirano
P. Abate D. Notker Wolf O.S.B. Rome
Abbot Primate of the Order of Saint Benedict
Commander Pius Segmüller
S.E.R. Card. Domenico Bartolucci
Emeritus Director of the Pontifical Musical Chorus of the Sistine Chapel
P. Giovanni Arledler
P. Giulio Libianchi Loyola S. J.
Emeritus Rector of St. Ignatius Basilica
Ing. Wolfgang D. Schrempp
Don Prospero Colonna
Principe D'Avella

S.A.S. Principessa Marilis Windisch-Graetz
Principessa Barberini
Donna Elika dei Principi del Drago
Duchesse de La Roche Guyon Geneva
Dr. Fabio Corvatta
Montserrat Caballé
Mons Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Bretschneider
President of St. Cecilia Association in Germany
M° Dr. Leo Cornelius Nestor Washington DC USA
Director of the Institute of Sacred Music, Justine Bayard Ward, Professor of Music at the Catholic University of America, Founding Member of the Conference of Roman Catholic Cathedral Musicians
M° John A. Romeri
St. Louis Artistic and Musical Coordinator of the Cathedral of St. Louis, USA
Dr. Gerre Hancock
New York
Organist and Master of Choristers of the Saint Thomas Church, New York, USA
M° Prof. Antonio Maria Russo Buenos Aires, Argentina
Composer and Musician
VIA PAOLO VI, 29 - 00193 ROMA (ITALIA) - C.F. 97124180585 - TEL. +39 0668805816 - INFO@AIAMS.IT