The Aidija Chamber Choir was formed in 1989 in Vilnius at the National M. K. Čiurlionis School of Art on the initiative of Romualdas Gražinis. Choir members are mainly former and current students of National M. K. Čiurlionis School of Art, students of Lithuanian Music and Theatre Academy. Aidija contributes a lot to the Lithuanian music culture, especially by spreading the works of contemporary Lithuanian composers. The choir’s extensive repertoire ranges from Gregorian chant and classics to contemporary music. Choir Aidija performs more than 30 concerts every year in Lithuania and abroad.
Chamber Choir “Aidija” was formed in 1989 in Vilnius at the National M. K. Čiurlionis School of Art on the initiative of Romualdas Gražinis. Choir members are mainly former and current students of National M. K. Čiurlionis School of Art, students of Lithuanian Music and Theatre Academy. Every year choir “Aidija” holds 30-35 concerts in Lithuania and abroad (Moldova, Ukraine, Belarus, Latvia, Great Britain, Germany, France, Spain, Sweden, Austria, Belgium, China, Finland, Poland, Georgia, Czech Republic).
In 1992 the choir won a laureate award in the International Choir Competition in Great Britain, in 1994 in the similar competition in the same country (Llangollen) got the best youth choir award. “Aidija” is a participant of many music festivals and other cultural events in Lithuania and abroad. In concerts “Aidija” performs a huge variety of Lithuanian and foreign classical and contemporary composers’ works. In 1992 the choir was appointed the Prize for old music promotion by the magazine “Krantai“, in 1993 the choir was given a second S. Šimkus Prize for the contemporary Lithuanian choral music promotion.
The choir was the first to perform complex works of Lithuanian composers: B. Kutavičius “Stabat Mater” (1995) and “Pronounce Word – Lips Turn Into Ice” (1996), O. Balakauskas “Requiem in Memoriam Stasys Lozoraitis” (1996), A. Martinaitis “A Song to the Sister Sun”(1996), O. Narbutaitė “Centones meae urbi” (1997), made recordings for the Lithuanian Radio and Television, CDs, cassettes, documentary films and theater performances.
Other Lithuanian composers’ premieres performed by “Aidija”: R. Mažulis “Stigma” (2009, Thomas Mann Festival, Nida), M. Baranauskas “Templum Dei estis” (2010, Thomas Mann Festival, Nida) D. Zakaras “Viburnum in the Night” (2011, Vilnius, Marijampolė, Kaunas), N. Sinkevičiūtė “Whistle”, “Lithuanian Suite” (2011, Kaunas, Vilnius, Marijampolė), T. Brazys “The Nine motets” (2011, Vilnius), Folk songs arranged by J. Karnavičius (2011, Thomas Mann Festival, Nida), A. Remesa, K. Vasiliauskaitė, and V. Bartulis sacral works for the concert “Advent Pages” (2012, Kaunas, Vilnius), V. Bartulis “My Mann’s Dune” (2013, Thomas Mann Festival, Nida), V. Bartulis “Credo” (2013 Šiluva feast day)m G. Samsonas “Mass” for choir and orchestra to mark the 600th anniversary of Kaunas Cathedral Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul (2013, Kaunas, Vilnius), A. Martinaitis “Oration on the 600th Anniversary of Baptism of the Samogitian People” (2013, Vilnius), R. Kabelis “The rain of roses” (2014, Thomas Mann Festival, Nida), G. Samsonas “Mass for Motherland” (2016, Vilnius), O. Balakauskas “Break of day” (2016, Thomas Mann Festival, Nida), D. Čemerytė “Letters: Venice – Nida” (2017, Thomas Mann Festival, Nida).
The choir successfully cooperates with the Church Heritage Museum. Around 20 concerts were held there between 2012 and 2018. Most of them – the music-educational programs, which include lectures on the nobility of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (Sapiegos, Radvilos, Pacai, Goštautai) and concerts, presenting a wealth of church music. At present, the lecture-concert project “Musica Sacra: XIV-XXI century church music masterpieces” is successfully implemented. Listeners are introduced to the Gregorian chant and early polyphony, Renaissance, Baroque composers. The concerts feature works of G.Machaut, J. Obrecht, Ch. Morales, P. L. da Palestrina, T. L. Vittoria, G. Gabrieli, H. Schütz, J. S. Bach, C. Ph. E. Bach, M. Haydn, and W. A. Mozart. Lectures-concerts are also held in other Lithuanian cities.
In 2010, the choir held performances in Brussels (Belgium) and performed in the European Parliament during the jubilee of the 20th anniversary of Lithuanian Independence with the participation of the European Union President Herman Van Rompuy and Lithuanian Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius.
In 2011, the choir participated in the festival “Pax et bonum per musicam” in Wroclaw (Poland) and presented a variety of Lithuanian composers’ works for choir.
In 2012, “Aidija” participated in the contemporary music festival in the Czech Republic. At the festival, the special evening for B. Kutavičius’s works was held in Hradec Kralove. The choir performed the composer’s works “From the Jatvingian Stone”, “The Magic Circle of Sanskrit” and “The Last Pagan Rites”.
In 2013, the choir was invited to the International Festival “Ogrody muzycznie” in Warsaw (Poland) and held the concert of Lithuanian music in the Royal Palace Courtyard.
In 2014, “Aidija” celebrated its 25th anniversary and arranged concerts in the biggest cities of Lithuania – Lithuanian National Philharmonic Concert Hall in Vilnius, Klaipėda Concert Hall and Kaunas State Philharmonic.
In 2015, “Aidija” for the first time participated in a theatricalized performance of W. A. Mozart “Requiem”, which was performed in St. Catherine’s Church in Vilnius (artistic director J. Vanskevičiūtė).
In April 2016, the choir took part in the 6th Tbilisi International Choral Music Festival. Performance in State Music Conservatory was highly appreciated by organizers, participants, and audience. In October 2016, the choir went to the European Capital of Culture Wroclaw (Poland) and performed W. H. J. Botor’s symphony “Ubi Caritas” in the festival “Pax et bonum per musicam”.
In June 2017, “Aidija” took part in the 15th International Chamber Choir Competition in Marktoberdorf (Germany) and was evaluated with “very good performance at the international level”. In October 2017, the choir participated in the festival “Moravian Autumn” and in Brno Philharmonic performed M. Kabelač’s symphony No. 8 „Antiphones“ and B. Kutavičius’s “The Last Pagan Rites”. “Aidija” also held a concert of Lithuanian choral music in Prague to commemorate the centenary of the restoration of the Lithuanian state.
In January 2018, on the occasion of the Freedom Defenders’ Day “Aidija” together with National Opera’s choir and orchestra performed A. Martinaitis’s oratory “Pieta”.
In 2018, “Aidija” held more concerts for the commemoration of Lithuanian statehood; took part in Sofia’s festival performing choral music of Lithuanian composer M. K. Čiurlionis, whose works have had a profound influence on modern Lithuanian culture. Celebrating the Baltic Centennial “Aidija” prepared a program of Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian choral music, which was performed at the Thomas Mann Festival. In September 2018, “Aidija” with great success participated in the 3rd International Baltic Sea Choir Competition in Jurmala (Latvia).
In 2019/2020, “Aidija” is celebrating its 30th anniversary.