Nelson Mandela Bay (NMB) will be hosting over 1500 choir members from the 18 to 20th October 2013, when the O R Tambo Choral Festival takes place at the Nangoza Jebe Hall in New Brighton. Ruth Rala, Chairperson of the Nelson Mandela Metro Choral Association says, “We are so excited to gather with the same passions and goals to show NMB what the choral festival is all about and the positive influence it can have on young and old”.
As Port Elizabeth, during 2013, celebrates 100 years since being declared a city the 10th Annual Provincial Choral Festival will take place in Nelson Mandela Bay as part of PE’s Centenary calendar of events.
Seven districts have multiple teams as finalists in the various categories. The districts represented are Alfred Nzo District, Amatole district, Cacadu District, Chris Hani District, Joe Gqabi District, Nelson Mandela Bay District and O R Tambo District. Taking place at the beginning of September each year, the Festival inaugurates the new musical season with a series of district Municipalities eliminations, while creating opportunities for choirs to meet and fraternize.
The annual event is named after Oliver Tambo who was a South African anti-apartheid politician and a central figure in the African National Congress (ANC). Apart from participating in football, tennis and cricket at St Peter’s, he was also a member of the school’s choir. Prior to becoming an advocate, he’d harboured a desire to enter the Priesthood and was a choral conductor and composer.
District Manager of the Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture Mrs Makhaza said, “It is a privilege to partner and host the event in our city as choral music provides learning and growth experiences, furthermore not only does it require discipline but a passion as well.” Choral music is music sung by a choir with two or more voices assigned to each part. This being the 10th anniversary event, ECCMA has added a special category called “Champ of Champs”. This category features all choirs who have been overall winners in the last 9 years to see who will be the Champion. The Nelson Mandela Bay District has the following three choirs participating in this category: Joy of Afrika, The Matthews Singers and the Transnet Port Terminal Choir.
Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism CEO, Ms Mandlakazi Skefile advises, “As a destination we are excited to host this event and welcome all the choirs to our family. All kinds of events such as this one have a positive impact on the local tourism economy as it attracts visitors from out of town and we therefore hope to have this event in NMB on an annual basis”.
Tickets will be R40.00 per day per person and the Eastern Cape Choral Music Association (ECCMA) has made provision for 3700 audience members and encourages all to arrive early as doors open at 10:00am.
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