- Old Mutual National Choir Festival
The 33d Old Mutual National Choir Festival, South Africa’s oldest and most prestigious choral music competition, commences in August.
Founded in 1978 by Professor Khabi Mngoma, this annual event encourages and promotes choral excellence whilst providing great enjoyment to participants and audiences alike.
The new streamlined audition process introduced last year, has again proved very successful. Competing choirs were required to record a Western and an African song (one of which must be with piano accompaniment) and submit their recordings via CD, DVD or cassette in order to be considered for the 2010 competition.
The qualification stage has now closed and regional championships will commence beginning of August and run through October 2010. These take place throughout the country’s nine provinces and Swaziland, kicking off in East London on 7 August. A complete list of the prescribed music for 2010 is available for download on the competition website, http://www.oldmutual.co.za/about-us/ under The Competition section.
The festival aims to take the standard of choral music in Southern Africa to new levels as well as enriches people’s lives, both as individuals and choristers, through their interaction with one another and their involvement in the festival. The number of participating choirs in this competition has grown and continues to grow tremendously on a year-to-year basis.
Old Mutual has financially backed this project since 1988, having partnered with other corporates, such as Ford, Samcor, Caltex and Telkom over the years. The name, National Choir Festival (NCF), is widely recognised as a brand on its own in the choral music fraternity and even goes beyond the borders of South Africa. The National Choir Festival has the element of mass participation as it is a year long national project and rotates within all the nine provinces.
The National Finals will take place on 11 and 12 December in Tshwane at the University of Pretoria’s Indoor Sports Centre.
Saturday 7 August, Eastern Cape: East London - Border Conference Centre
Sunday 15 August, Western Cape: Cape Town – University of the Western Cape
Sunday 22 August, Northwest: Mafikeng - Mmabatho Civic Centre
Sunday 29 August. Free State: Welkom – Ernest Oppenheimer Theatre
Sunday 5 September, Limpopo: Polokwane - Jack Botes Hall
Sunday 12 September, Gauteng: Johannesburg – University of Johannesburg, Soweto campus
Sunday 19 September, Swaziland: Ezulwini - Convention Centre
Sunday 3 October, Mpumalanga: Witbank - Civic Centre
Sunday 10 October, Northern Cape: Kuruman – City Hall
Saturday 16 October, Kwazulu Natal: Durban - City Hall