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Columbus Kinderchor


20220605 Saengerfest1

Our Mission:

The Columbus Kinderchor is committed to promoting the German, Austrian, and Swiss heritage of Central Ohio through the performance of traditional folk songs and classical compositions of German-speaking people of Europe and of the United States. 

We view the children in our chorus as the young ambassadors of Germanic Culture in Central Ohio, and from Central Ohio to the world.


Upcoming events, Spring 2024:

April 27th, 1pm - Singing at Männerchor Maifest

May 5th, 3pm - Kaffee Konzert at Germania

June 1st, 4pm - Männerchor Spring Concert at St. James Lutheran Church


Our Story
Our Music
Our Community
Our Leaders
The Kinderchor was founded in 1969 by families within the Columbus Männerchor and Damenchor, whose children had gathered to learn Christmas carols. Originally comprised primarily of children with German heritage, the Kinderchor eventually expanded its membership to include any child who has a love of music and an interest in the German language and culture. 

Over the years, with the support of other local German singing societies, one small troupe became two full choruses — the younger children sang with the Kinderchor (“children’s choir”), while the older children performed more challenging music with the Jugendchor (“youth choir”). In time, the groups’ combined membership would grow to as many as eighty singers, even traveling to Germany to tour and perform! In recent years, the Kinderchor has remained a little closer to home, enjoying the opportunity to perform several times throughout the year at various events in the Central Ohio area. 

The chorus now focuses chiefly on helping its young singers to develop their skills and confidence. Rooted in a spirit of teamwork, we encourage each of our members to become strong leaders in their schools and exceptional citizens in their community.
The children's repertoire is tailored to meet the needs of growing voices at all skill levels. The very youngest enjoy learning German nursery rhymes and children’s songs, while older children may focus on traditional folk songs and classical pieces. 
Some of our current favorites include:
  • Alle meine Entchen
  • Bruder Jakob
  • Ringel Ringel Reihe
  • Tomatensalat!
  • Mein Hut, der hat drei Ecken
  • Du, du liegst mir im Herzen
  • Viel Glück und viel Segen
  • Die Gedanken sind frei
  • Mein Vater war ein Wandersmann
Whatever the challenge, all singers learn the fundamentals of posture and breathing, proper vocal technique, and active listening. We may also focus on developing more advanced skills, such as singing in rounds and in harmony, as well as understanding and communicating the meaning of the text. At every level, the chorus’s primary goals are to work toward building German-language vocabulary, learning good musical practices, and exploring the art of performance. All who share our love of song are welcome to participate!

We perform several times per year throughout Central Ohio. Our uniforms are traditional Tracht: Lederhosen (German pants), Dirndls & Landhaus (German Country) dresses. We maintain a collection of outfits in a variety of sizes that our singers can borrow.

While the Kinderchor has always been proud to call the Columbus Männerchor its home, the group has also joyfully welcomed the children of families of Germania Singing and Sport Society, the Columbus Swiss Club, and most recently, the Ohio German Language School 

In recent years, the Kinderchor has enjoyed the honor of performing at St. Mary Catholic Church in German Village, Franklin Park Conservatory, at the Opening Ceremonies of the Columbus Oktoberfest, and at the Cleveland Oktoberfest. In April of 2023, our more experienced singers joined the New World Singers of the Columbus Children’s Choir at the closing concert of the '22-'23 Concerts at First Church Series. 

The Columbus Kinderchor is recognized regionally by the Zentral Ohio Sängerbezirk (ZOSB), and nationally by the Nord-Amerikanischer Sängerbund (NASB).
Frau Direktorin Katie Bretz has been singing with the Columbus Männerchor and Damenchor since 2019 and began serving as director of the Kinderchor in 2021. She has earned university degrees in both German and Vocal Performance, and currently tutors students with the Ohio German Language School. Hailing from Olde Towne East, she enjoys singing with her church choir, performing in local productions with Opera Project Columbus, and arguing with her cat.

Frau Präsidentin Barbara Leeman has enjoyed singing with the Columbus Damenchor for six years. Barbara and her husband lived in Switzerland for two years where she was a costume seamstress for the Lucerne Theatre. Now she has a variety of hobbies and happily entertains her family and her five granddaughters.
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