Soweto Gospel Choir - Poster

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Soweto Gospel Choir High School Series

The Soweto Gospel Choir will be taking over the auditorium at Godby High School. They will be performing an abridged version of their public performance piece Songs of the Free. This very special program celebrates the centenary of the birth of the father of South Africa, Nelson Mandela.

About Soweto Gospel Choir Direct from South Africa, Soweto Gospel Choir is an awe-inspiring, two-time GrammyŽ Award winning and 20-member ensemble that thrills audiences worldwide with their stunning blend of African gospel music, spirituals and American popular music. Earthy rhythms and rich harmonies sung in six of South Africa’s 11 official languages are combined for a moving performance, which uplifts the soul through the music & dance of South Africa.


Interesting Facts:

About Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela was a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary, political leader, Nobel Peace Prize winner and philanthropist who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999. Mandela spent many of his years in jail for fighting for a democratic and free society. In all, Mandela was imprisoned for 27 years, 18 of those on Robben Island, a rock quarry off the coast of Cape Town. After his release in 1990, Mandela immersed himself in official talks to end white minority rule and in 1991 was elected African National Congress President to replace his ailing friend, Oliver Tambo. On April 27, 1994 he voted for the first time in his life, and a few months later was swore in as South Africa’s first democratically elected President. Mandela died on December 5, 2013 at the age of 95 surrounded by his family.

Questions for Before the Concert Use the questions below to start a discussion with your students. These questions are designed to help you and your students prepare for the show. 1. The Soweto Gospel Choir will perform a very special program celebrating the 100thanniversary of the birth of the father of South Africa, Nelson Mandela. If you could celebrate the 100thanniversary of the birth of someone you believe has been an inspiration, who would it be? Explain why you selected this person. 2. The Soweto Gospel Choir’s music is a blend of blend of African gospel music, spirituals and American popular music. Identify another artist or group whose musical style is similar to that of Soweto Gospel Choir. Explain what about the works of the artist or group makes it similar to that of Soweto Gospel Choir. 3. The Soweto Gospel Choir’s performance is expected to move and uplift you through the music and dance of South Africa. Identify other musical artists who move and uplift you through their music. What about their music has an impact on you? 4. The Soweto Gospel Choir costumes are made of different colors and symbols from the different tribes in South Africa, incorporating their history, roots, culture and religion. Describe what a costume would look like if you were creating one representing your personal history, culture, and religion.

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