The African Children's Choir

  • 28 July 2006

This article is from 2006.

Between the ages of seven and 11 our primary concerns tend to be school, sweets and playing with our pals. Sadly, that’s not the case worldwide as the kids in this choir will attest. Every one of the children here have been touched in some way by the AIDS pandemic in Africa, having lost one or both parents to poverty and disease.

Formed in 1984 by aid worker Ray Barnett, every year, a new choir is selected (the previous year’s return back to school) to travel the world performing uplifting spiritual traditional African songs. While this might all sound a bit worthy, stop and remember that, more than just a charitable endeavour, this choir actually sounds good. Such is their quality that they have enjoyed a variety of top gigs of late, performing at the 2006 Oscars and the 2005 Proms. It’s not all fun and glamour though, they had to endure the indignity of accompanying Mariah Carey during her Live8 (over) performance last year. Hopefully the last traumatic experience they’ll have in their already unsteady lives.

St Andrew’s and St George’s Church, 225 3847, from 3 Aug (dates vary), 4.30pm, £12 (£10-12).

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