Chorals celebrate our diversity

2015-09-24 06:00
The Chorus, made up of members from across the peninsula, are one of the choirs participating in this year’s Indigenous Choral Festival.

The Chorus, made up of members from across the peninsula, are one of the choirs participating in this year’s Indigenous Choral Festival.

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As South Africa celebrates its heritage this month, choirs from around the Western Cape are preparing to celebrate the country’s diversity.

Hosted by the Western Cape Choral Music Association (WeCCMA), in association with Artscape, the Indigenous Choral festival is a celebration of the many faces and stories of South Africa. The event takes place at the Artscape Theatre on Sunday 27 September from 14:00.

Now in its third year, the festival invites local choirs to represent indigenous cultures through song on stage.

WeCCMA’s Lungile Jacobs says it is the highlight of the Western Cape choral calendar.

“The eisteddfod is known throughout the province as the WECCMA event not to be missed,” he says, adding: “It is the culmination of a number of events we’ve had throughout the year which included a gender based competition, a developmental soloist competition, conductor’s workshops and orchestral conducting workshop.”

Jacobs points out the festival is a great opportunity to teach young people about different cultures and build the spirit of ubuntu. The festival is usually held in August to also commemorate Women’s Month and the WeCCMA encourages female conductors as part of the development of women in the choral fraternity.

This year’s festival will feature performances by the Princess Square Singers, Joyful Harmonies, the UWC Creative Arts Choir, the CPUT choir, Ntirisano Arts Academy, the UCT Choir for Africa, The Chorus, Western Classical Voices, New Voices Of the Cape, the Transnet engineering Choir, the Simon Estes Alumni Choir, United Choral Artists, Western Chorale, Phenomenal Opera Voices, Heavenly Voices and the SA Navy Choir.

The festival will be divided into two categories and the audience will get to choose the winners for the day. The first half of the competition will see the choirs perform a cultural indigenous piece, before they come back to sing Izitibili (action songs) or folklore pieces with a band in the second half of the show.

“This is a day of embracing our individuality and uplifting our cultural heritage as a choral society,” Jacobs says. Tickets for the festival cost R50 and are available from Computicket. Visit

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