Michael von Habsburg-Lothringen
Archduke of Austria


(Spoločnosť Chór Svätej Koruny)
Choir of the St. Crown - SK

The choir which is dedicated to the cultivation of religious music, was established in 1997. It has its origin in the years 1995-1996, when the joining of the choir began to develop.Originally a women´s choir, over a period of years it developed into a mixed choir.It got its name - taken in 1977- from the Hungarian royal crown, a replica of which decorates the village church tower. The choir has 30 members.Its repertory ranges from Gregorian chant through Renaissance and Baroque polyphony to contemporary Hungarian sacred music. It fulfils a regular liturgical duty in the life of the parish and in addition to this main task the choir is an active participant in concerts and cultural programmes both at home and in Hungary.

For years the choir has made guest appearances in several regional capitals in Hungary, just as in cities in Austria, the Czech Republic and Italy.In 2001, a large - scale Italian peregrination tour was a lasting experience for the choir. Over many years they have performed, among other places, in Padua, and, in Rome, Saint Paul and Saint Peter´s Basilica, St John Lateran Basilica and Santa Maria Maggiore Church. Amongst the choir´s most memorable appearances abroad are the ones in Pest Vigado and at the Music Academy in Budapest, as well as the guest performance in St Stephen´s Cathedral in Vienna. The choir has twice taken part in a meeting of sacred music ensembles in Vac and in Piliscsaba /Hungary/

It has won prizes in several national and international choral competitions: in 1999 in the XI. Kodaly Days festival, and in 2001 at Namestovo International Choir Competition, where it was awarded the silver wreath qualification in the ´sacred music´ category.In the XII. Kodaly Days festival in 2002 it achieved a gold wreath qualification with the praise of the jury.In 2003 in the XXI. International Choir Contest in Olomouc / Czech Republic /, it was awarded the silver prize in the ´sacred music´category and in 2005 it once again reached the gold wreath qualification in the Kodaly Days festival.

During the course of these years, the choir has worked under a number of famous directors including Jozsef Zsolt Unterweger, Laszlo Tardy, Gabor Beres, Laszlo Varga, and has collaborated with the organists Anasztazia Bednarik, Istvan Laufer, Istvan Baroti, and the soloists Gabriella  Csinger, Greta Vajda, Emilia Kavecki.

Ipolybalog, the village with only 900 people, gives room to the choir from the very beginning.


Ipolybalog was already an inhabited settlement before the Hungarian conquest /9th century/.The village was situated on the right side of the river Ipoly, locally also called the ´Paloc Nile´.The village was first mentioned in 1232 by the name Bolug in the charter granted by the Hungarian king Endre II

The pride and ornament of the village is the oldest Arpadian age church in Slovakia. The church is the eminent proof of the king, Saint Istvan´s church orders. On the basis of the monograph of Hont county, the Romanesque style building is believed to have been built in 1011. At the top of the church tower one can see a replica of the Hungarian royal crown. According to authentic sources at the time of the conflict between Robert Karoly and Wenceslas, the Czech king, for the Hungarian throne, Wenceslas, while fleeing, took the crown with him and on his way the crown rested in the church for one or a couple of nights.The hollow where the crown is alleged to have been placed can be seen even today. To commemorate this remarkable event, King Matyas /1458-1490/ had a replica of the sacred crown made by Czech craftsmen, and had it put on the church tower.

In 2005, on the 701st anniversary of the crown´s passage through Ipolybalog, the village had a genuine duplicate of the crown made, and placed it with a ceremony in the original place of protection.It was for these celebrations that Tamas Daroci Bardos wrote his compositions ´The Sacred Crown Mass´and ´The Song of the Sacred Crown´.

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