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Uhuru choir fiesta beckons


Mohalenyane Phakela

CHORAL music aficionados are in for a treat next Sunday as the Choral Music Federation of Lesotho (CMFL) hosts its second annual Independence Music Choir Festival at the Maseru Club Hall.

Four choral ensembles; Mohapeloa Singer from Maseru, Sound of The South (Mafeteng), National University of Lesotho Choir (Roma) and Berea Marvellous Voice will be granted the unique opportunity to sing beautiful African songs composed by Basotho and also perform folk music.

The fiesta will be held to mark the end of the country’s 50th Independence celebrations whilst also coinciding with the Arts, Innovation and Culture week which will start tomorrow and end on Sunday.

Organised by the Ministry of Tourism, Environment and Culture Arts, the Arts, Innovation and Culture Week was first held in 2015 with the aim of celebrating Lesotho’s cultural diversity and fostering unity among various stakeholders.

It will feature such activities such as carnivals, drama, conferences on women, youth and culture as well as a Lesotho cultural diversity lecture, poetry, contemporary and traditional music and tasting of foods from the diverse groups of people living in Lesotho.

The Independence Music Choir Festival was introduced last year with four choirs from around Maseru. The Independence Music Choir Festival is one of the two choral festivals organised by CMFL, with the other being Standard Lesotho Bank – African Melody Festival held in November every year.

CMFL Treasurer Mathe Malefetsane told Xpress People this past week the upcoming edition will feature different choirs with the aim of providing a platform to all the 25 choirs which are CMFL members.

“We had four choirs from Maseru last year, so this time we decided to go out to other parts of the country where we have members of CMFL,” Malefetsane said.

“The aim is to keep choral music alive in the country by offering the opportunity to all our members irrespective of their class as Mohapeloa falls under the Large Section while the other three are from the Standard Section. We will have different choirs in the coming editions until every choir has had the opportunity.”

“Being from different sections will allow each choir to weigh its competency although this will not be a competition as such but a platform for them to showcase their talents,” he indicated, adding that each of the four choirs would get a M5 000 boost.

Malefetsane also said they started the independence festival so that the choirs would not only be active when preparing for the Standard Lesotho Bank – African Melody Festival.

“Our dream is to have many choral celebrations so that choirs can be active throughout the year not only when preparing for the November contest as that does not give them the opportunity to rectify their flaws ahead of the African Melody Festival. The biggest challenge we have is lack of financial backing,” he added.

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