Fest promotes choral music

Siyabonga Africa

Siyabonga Africa

The Mutloatse Arts Heritage Trust celebrated Freedom Day by holding its first South African Composers' Choral Music Encounters Festival at the University of Johannesburg.

The trust said more than 300 voices, comprising six choirs, sang songs of freedom and hope by veteran as well as contemporary composers, who conducted their peers.

About 1000 people attended the event and festival programme director Thulasizwe Nkabinde said they celebrated their freedom with style.

The University of Johannesburg Chorale, Soweto Youth Choir, Soweto Young Voices, Ekurhuleni Youth Choir, Holy Rosary Church Choir and Witbank Adult Choir took part in the festival.

Trust spokesman Boitumelo Mofokeng said one of the highlights was seeing the youth singing in and conducting their own choirs.

This was demonstrated, for example, by the University of Johannesburg Chorale under the baton of opera singer Kholisa Bulo.

Veteran choral musician Linda Mngoma said: "The festival's main goal is to preserve, teach and develop choral music.

"The aim was also to record it and give it a shelf life that will be appreciated by generation to come."

Nkabinde said Sunday's festival was the launch of a nationwide project that would see the event being held in every South African province with performances from the provincial choirs.