Sunday, 19 September 2021

Youngsters learn to sing in Xhosa

MEMBERS of Henley Youth Choir learned to sing in a South African language during a series

MEMBERS of Henley Youth Choir learned to sing in a South African language during a series of music workshops.

The sessions at the d:two centre in Market Place were led by international singer Joyce Moholoagae, who grew up in the country.

She taught a traditional song called

La Shoni Langa
, meaning “the sun has set”, to several dozen children aged eight to 11.

The song is performed in a language called Xhosa, which includes a series of tongue and throat clicks as well as vowel and consonant sounds.

Ms Moholoagae taught the children to pronounce three different types of click before they tackled the song.

By the end of the 45-minute session they had learned the entire piece and could sing it all the way through.

Afterwards, Ms Moholoagae led a class on vocal techniques for a small group of older children.

The workshop was organised by Benjamin Goodson, musical director of the Henley Choral Society, and was one of several that will be held this year.

The youth choir was founded in September and now has 50 members in its junior section and about a dozen seniors aged 12 to 17. Committee member Angela Law said: “We thought it would be great for the children to experience singing something diffferent.

“They rose to the occasion and really got along with Joyce’s particular way of singing and complete joie de vivre in her subject.

“We want our children to sing a wide variety of music â?? our tradition is choral music but this term both choirs are singing everything from Bruno Mars and Cyndi Lauper to the Beatles and Mozart. The choir has gone brilliantly since we launched but we’ve got room for more children.”

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