News of the Diocese
October 3, 2022
Slovenian Days in Cleveland 2022 featured a series of events highlighting the culinary traditions, music, film and culture of the Slovenian people. The events were coordinated by the Consulate General of the Republic of Slovenia.
One event was a concert by the Megaron Chamber Choir from St. Stanislav’s Institution in Ljubljana, Slovenia that took place on Sept. 23 in the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist. The well-attended, free concert was part of the cathedral’s renowned Helen D. Schubert Concerts for the 2022/2023 season.
Alenka Jerak, consul general, welcomed the audience to the concert prior to the performance. She is the first woman to become consul general in Cleveland. Jerak began serving on Aug. 1, 2019.
Also welcoming the choir and audience was Bishop Edward Malesic, who has Slovenian roots. He pointed out his coat of arms on the cathedra behind the altar, noting the linden tree symbolizes the Slovenian heritage of his late father. The linden tree is considered the national tree of Slovenia and also is considered a symbol of joy and safety. In the explanation of his coat of arms, the bishop said the community often gathered under the shade of a linden tree for fellowship and community discussions.
He also noted that Cleveland is home to the largest Slovenian population outside of Slovenia. There are about 80,000 people of Slovenian heritage in Greater Cleveland.
Damijan Mocnik is conductor of Megaron Chamber Choir, which consists of former students – young men and women — of the Diocesan Classical Gymnasium at St. Stanislav’s Institution who previously had been active in various choral ensembles and received music education in one or more of the five choirs at the Diocesan Classical Gymnasium. It was founded 20 years ago and has won numerous honors. The choir tours both in Europe and abroad.
Most recently, in 2022 it received the golden plaque and award for best interpretation of a renaissance piece and award for the best competition program in the International Chamber Choir Competition in Marktoberdorf, Germany.
The choir regularly works with many prominent orchestras and conductors on vocal-instrumentation projects.
During the cathedral concert, the choir sang a combination of sacred and secular pieces, mostly a cappella, but with organ accompaniment on some by Andraz Ristic.
In addition to its cathedral concert, the choir performed on Sept. 25 at a Mass at St. Mary Parish in Cleveland’s Collinwood neighborhood, where many of the parishioners are of Slovenian heritage.
Learn more about Megaron Chamber Choir here.
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News of the Diocese