Mon 01 Jul - 7.30 pm - Oxford Town Hall, St Aldates

African Skies, 1 July 2019

with Bloemfontein Children's Choir and Oxford Youth Choirs. Hosted by Roderick Williams

African Skies, compèred by operatic baritone, composer and BBC presenter Roderick Williams OBE, brings together different cultures, communities and genres in an exciting musical occasion to celebrate diversity in youth music.

Bloemfontein Children’s Choir with Oxford Youth Choirs, East Oxford Community Choir and Littlemore Music Project.

Tickets £10 on the door. Children under 11 free.

About Bloemfontein Children’s Choir

Bloemfontein Children’s Choir is an amateur youth choir comprising boys and girls between the ages of 8 and 16 from Bloemfontein, South Africa and surrounding areas.

Dr Huibrie Verster founded the choir in 1987 and has been conducting it ever since.

Although singing is obviously very important, the choir also offers its members – and often their families too – so much more than just a shared enjoyment of great voices and music. The choir has a strong nurturing ethos and is committed to enabling cultural and personal development
opportunities for its children. The Choir describes itself as “proudly South African”.

“Our choir is based on the idea that each person is special and deserving of love and respect. We strive to give our children not only a rich and diverse education in music but to enrich them by cultural experiences and development of essential life skills”.

Richard Vendome, Musical Director of Oxford Youth Choirs says: “Touring abroad is aspirational for any young musician. It is the gift of confidence, personal development and experience to last a lifetime. This is an ethos that unites our two choirs and we are delighted to welcome these young South African singers to Oxford. We value this opportunity to share in music making and cultural exchange, and hope we can build on this in the future”.

Roderick Williams says: “When I first toured with a Bach Passion to South Africa in 1995, an outreach visit to Soweto to work with a male-voice choir was added to our itinerary almost as an afterthought. It turned out to be a profoundly inspirational meeting of musical cultures, culminating in life-long friendships, a continuing exchange of musical ideas, and a collaborative album which toured live in both the UK and South Africa. Bringing things right up-to-date, I am so pleased to be presenting this concert here in Oxford when that spirit of collaboration, exchange and cultural enrichment flowers once again. I am sure the connection these young performers will make across continents will have a similarly long-lasting effect.”