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The Disabled Veteran Choir, later renamed into Partisan Choir, was established on 20 April 1944 in Planina, a village in the Municipality of Semič. This April, the choir is celebrating its 75th anniversary, which will be commemorated with a cultural event befitting this jubilee.
During the war, the choir held over 200 performances. Partisan songs and songs of rebellion were sung by the first partisan units, immediately after their formation. They sang them during battles, when charging towards enemy lines, they sang them after battles, to close ranks and say farewell to their fallen comrades, and they sang them in concentration camps.
On the liberated territory in Bela Krajina, the Partisan resistance movement established institutions that form a constituent part of a country, including cultural institutions. The first conductor of the choir, Karol Pahor, found good singers among the recuperating fighters in a partisan hospital. Soon after intensive rehearsals the singers began to perform. These songs were welcomed in all corners of Slovenia, in vineyard cottages on the hills of Dolenjska, in Primorska patriots’ barns and hiding places, on liberated territories, and deep behind enemy lines. The partisan songs and songs of rebellion won the hearts of many Slovenians who have been proudly singing them to this day.
The Partisan Choir keeps alive patriotic and partisan songs, which were composed in the hardest times of our existence and is the guardian of this cultural heritage.
Primarily, the jubilee concert will be a musical event evoking the beauty of partisan and other songs. Featured guests will include the Primorska Academic Choir Vinko Vodopivec, the Laško Wind Orchestra, and solo soprano Gaja Sorč. With this concert we wish to symbolically express that the tradition of the songs of rebellion, patriotic and partisan songs is important for all generations.
The concert will be held in four parts: the Partisan Choir will perform first, the Academic Choir Vinko Vodopivec will take centre stage in the second part, the third part will feature the Laško Wind Orchestra, and for the fourth part soprano singer Gaja Sorč will be joining all the above-mentioned ensembles. The last part will furthermore commemorate the anniversary of the death of poet Karel Destovnik Kajuh, with the first performance of a song with his lyrics.