Karisbilder, a book from 1907, has a photo of eleven elderly and some younger gentlemen, dressed to the nines. They call themselves Karis Sångarbröder (Karis Singing Brothers).
In the 1930s, the local fire brigade was asked whether the premises could also be used for choir practice. The minutes of the fire brigade meeting included an entry on 7 November 1934, stating that a male choir had been established for the fire brigade. One of the conditions set for choir activities was that all choir members had to join the fire brigade. The choir operated under the name of Karis FBK:s manskör (Karis Fire Brigade Male Choir) until 1947. As cooperation between the choir and the fire brigade was only nominal, the two eventually parted company on 3 March 1947.
On 10 March 1947, the choir had its constitutive meeting and decided to change its name to Karis Manskör (Karis Male Choir). It was also noteworthy that they had Finland’s first female male-choir conductor, Noomi Elfving. Letters to her were addressed to “Mr Noomi Elfving”.
Years went by, and singers and conductors came and went. A new name for the choir, Manskören Raseborg (Raseborg Male Choir), was registered in April 2008.
Interesting facts about the persons involved, historical facts, events and anecdotes can be found in Torsten Bergman’s book På besök hos Karis Manskör, of 2009.
Karis Sångarbröder 1907
In the back row from the left: two students called Holmberg, railway accountant Wasarinen, land surveyor Volmar Svaetichin, radio operator Ilmari Sjöholm. Middle row: telegraph auditor Karl Wegelius, pastor Mosander, radio operator Emerik Aalto (first chairman of the local sports club, KIK), painter Holmberg. Front row: cantor Karl Antin, crown sheriff Väinö Sjöholm.
Photo: Local archive, Aresti.