Who´s Who

Helma Haller lives in Curitiba, the capital of the state of Paraná, Brazil.

Her work is characterised by meticulous and refined interpretations, and complemented by extensive research about Brazilian concert and chamber music. She strives to promote this kind of music around the world, with lectures and by interpreting it with her groups. She is also a performance coach for soloists and chamber groups.

She is the founder and artistic director of the "Collegium Cantorum Women's Choir".

Helma Haller is currently the Brazilian representative at the World Choir Council.

Until December 2012 she was the Director of the professional choir Camerata Antiqua de Curitiba, in which she also played numerous other roles over a period of more than 30 years. In 1999, she conducted the world premiere of Turris Ebúrnea, for chorus and orchestra, by Harry Crowl, during the Camerata’s Silver Jubilee. In 2007, she led the choir in its tour of concerts in Portugal, and in 2008, this same group was selected for presentations at the 8th World Symposium on Choral Music, in Copenhagen, Denmark, under her direction. The group also performed at the International Festival "La Fabbrica del Canto", in Italy, June 2009. In the last two years she have been dedicated to interprete the german romantic music with this choir. In November 2011 she performed Brahms "Ein deutsches Requiem" for two pianos, the London version from 1871.

She has participated in choral festivals around the world with her various groups, performing her specialist repertoire to audiences whose specific interest is Brazilian vocal music.

In her programs she unites the various poetic languages thus delivering broader and original interpretations. By combining the musical score and poetic text with dramatic and scenic movements, as well as visual aesthetics and an excellent level of music, she is able to build a link with the audience that makes the artistic content of the concert relevant to the audiences’ daily life.

Ana Cristina Lago
Assistant Conductor and mezzo-soprano singer of the “Collegium Cantorum – Women’s Choir”, she obtained Bachelor’s degree in piano from the “School of Fine Arts and Music of Parana”. She participated in extension courses in piano, choral and chamber music and musical education. She has been a member of vocal groups, acting as a singer, pianist, conductor, composer and arranger. Her works are mainly oriented to the young generation, children and teenager. Compositions and arrangements
Having conducted several choirs, nowadays she is the director of the Teen-Children’s Choir “Mustard Grain” of the “Mennonite Church New Covenant” in Curitiba, Brazil.
She also works on projects in the musical education field with piano lessons, courses and workshops of the State Department of Education in several cities in Parana, besides teaching courses for conductors of teen-children’s choirs at the “Oficina de Música de Curitiba” (Curitiba’s Music Festival), the “Voice Festival” in the city of Bebedouro, and preparation of conducting courses called “A Song In Each Corner” of Curitiba City Hall. For the last eight years she has integrated the staff of conductors of the “HSBC Children’s Choir”, a project called “Christmas at the Avenue”.

Maria Herrmann Destefani
Project Manager and founder member of the “Collegium Cantorum – Women’s Choir”, she is a soprano singer, who has been a student of Idilio Donati, Desta Dini (Curitiba, Brazil), Stanley Rishoi (Watertown, S.Dak., USA), Rio Novello e Ana Vargas (Curitiba, Brazil).
She participated in choir groups in the USA, like Girls Chorus, Mixed Chorus and A. Capella. In a singing contest she was classified to enter the “Girls Vocal Ensemble” and the “All State Chorus”, conducted by Dr. Elaine Brown, South Dakota, USA. In the southern city of Curitiba, Brazil, she participated in the Symphonic Choir of Paraná.
Mrs. Maria Hermann Destefani majored in Sociology from the “Federal University of Paraná” and is also a consultant, specialist in planning, human resources and administration, with an extension course in Tokyo, Japan, about public administration with a scholarship from the JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency).