New CD from Choir for Africa

18 August 2006

Eight years ago UCT's Choir for Africa released their debut recording, Choir for Africa Live at the Baxter Theatre. At the launch of the new CD, Our Heritage, on August 8, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-Principal, Professor Martin West, received the Distinguished Patron Award for sponsorship and support of the group.

Recording began in July 2005 and concluded in mid-July this year, a production co-ordinated by executive producer Chupe Serote, producer Lungile Jacobs and chairperson Nozipho Sibanda.

The CD features 12 songs, including three bonus master tracks from the first one. Ardent choral lovers will enjoy Mzilikazi Khumalo's Kwadedangendlala and SSM Ntombela's Bizani Abangalena. The repertoire includes Western classics like Cavalleria Rusticana by Pietro Masagni. Five African folk songs round off the production.

The choir has chalked up many successes.

"Internationally it is one of the undisputed repositories of African choral and festival music," Serote said.

Milestones include performances at the inauguration of former president Nelson Mandela in 1994, and for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on her state visit to South Africa. They sang on BBC TV's My Favourite Hymns programme on which Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu was interviewed.

In 1997 they toured Norway to perform at the Skien International Choirs Festival, and in 2003 were invited by the Vancouver Summer Festival Society to sing for audiences across the city.

Last year the choir pocketed no less than four trophies at the South African Tertiary Institutions Choir Association festival.

And, of course, their first CD is still available. Both make great gifts and the new CD can be bought for R70 from Chupe Serote on 406 6936, email It will soon be available from Brain Books.

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