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„Come prima, piu di prima t’amero…”

Everyone knows this popular Italian song, but only a few people know that “come prima” is also a musical term and means “like the first time” (musical dictionary of László Bőhm). Our name reflects the fact that the founders created this new choir with the same enthusiasm that many of them had shown previously when creating earlier choirs.

The Come Prima Choir was founded in the spring of 1999 in Gyöngyös, with Veronika Illés as its leader. Our debut concert took place on 31st May 1999 in the Kolping House. Since then, the community of the Kolping Family has provided us with a room where we can practice for 1.5-2 hours each week, and they also help us to organise our concerts.

We sing songs from all epochs of music history and we are regularly enriching and expanding our repertoire. We tend to choose songs and compositions that are not so well-known or have never been performed in our town before. Lately, we have been moving towards popular music and have come to realise that light music is not really “light” at all!

The most memorable moments in the life of the choir are the concerts: when a period of preparation ends, and we go onto the stage to present all the pieces we have been working on. Each year we organise concerts for Easter and for Christmas, and also a farewell concert to the summer. These concerts are usually held in the Franciscan Church and the Kolping House and we hope to carry on this tradition.

What is the mission of a choir? Delight, delectation, preserving the values of genuine music. Exploring the compositions of brilliant composers of the past and presenting them to the audience. Music should never be an end in itself but rather, the fulfilment of joy and beauty. We hope that every single time we go onto the stage we will be able to sing with unbroken enthusiasm and belief, just “like the first time”: COME PRIMA!

Qualifications and awards

December 2nd 2001 – Golden degree

March 5th 2005 – Qualification as a festival choir

June 18th-21st 2005 – VII. Małopolski Choir Competition in Niepołomice – Qualification Golden Bow

April 14th-16th 2007 – IX. Małopolski Choir Competition in Niepołomice – Silver degree

November 27th-30th 2008 – XVIII. International Advent and Christmas Music Competition and Festival in Prague – Silver certificate

May 24th 2009 – Pro Civitate group award (presented by the town of Gyöngyös)

November 14th 2009 – Qualification as concert choir

Ocober 24th 2015 – Qualification as gala choir

CD recording

2002 – Gyöngyös – Musical Town (or Gyöngyös Making Music)