Monday, September 8, 2008

Mokale Koapeng Leads Cantus Africana in Celebration of Joshua Mohapeloa Centenary

[Mokale Koapeng, Conductor of Cantus Africana Chamber Choir]

Today AfriClassical had word from Mokale Koapeng: “I have forwarded a pdf text of a local composers festival. On page 16 there is text on a performance I had yesterday. It is part of the Mohapeloa centenary celebrations. There will be another performance on the 20th of October.” The concert took place in Johannesburg, South Africa. An introduction from the website of is followed by excerpts from the concert program:
“NewMusicSA is the South African section of the International Society for Contemporary Music.” “We mark not only Messiaen's centenary this year but also that of South African choral composer Joshua Mohapeloa with a concert of choral music directed by Mokale Koapeng on Sunday 7th September at Holy Trinity Church in Johannesburg. This concert is preceded by a lecture and forum on the composer led by Christine Lucia at Wits.”

Cantus Africana Chamber Choir
Mokale Koapeng conductor
Joshua Pulumo Mohapeloa (1908-1982)
Khanya (Meloli le Lithallere tsa Afrika Bk.I (1935) No.32
Ha Ke Na Le Morena (MLLA Bk.I (1935) No.31)
Chabana sa Khomo (MLLA Bk.I (1935) No.2)
Nonyana Senya Mafi (MLLA Bk.III (1947) No.66)
Leeba (MLLA Bk.II (1939) No.33)
U ea Kae? (MLLA Bk.I (1935) No.1)
Qeu, Qeu, Majoana (MLLA Bk.I (1935) No.4)
Ei, ei (MLLA Bk.I (1935) No.6)
Tselane (MLLA Bk.I (1935) No.19)
Potla-potla Leja Poli (MLLA Bk.I (1935) No.8)
Linoto (MLLA Bk.III (1947) No.68)
Liphala (Khalima-Nosi tsa ’Mino Oa Kajeno (1951) No.3)
Obe (MLLA Bk.II (1939) No.63)

Cantus Africana is a recently-formed 16-voice chamber choir boasting several champion soloists and graduates of various universities in Gauteng. The choir's repertoire is made up of works by old and new South African composers.

Mokale Koapeng, South African composer and choral director, is a music graduate of the University of the Witwatersrand. He has conceived a long-term project which he calls “A Hidden Cultural Picture” which aims to bring classical music of composers of African descent to the music public in South Africa, in part by incorporating it in established national choral festivals. In 1999 he held workshops on South African music at the Sibelius Academy at the University of Jyvasklya in Finland. In 2000 he was appointed as conductor of the University of Pretoria Chorale. Mokale Koapeng is also the Music Director of SDASA Chorale, drawn from the Seventh Day Adventists' Student Association. It released the CD Simunye to international acclaim in partnership with a British vocal group, I Fagiolini. “Simunye” is a Zulu word meaning 'we are one' and is the name given to a project developed by I Fagiolini and the SDASA Chorale of Soweto. It resulted in a CD and joint concert tours to South Africa, the UK, Scandinavia and Bermuda.” His first opera Earthdiving was premiered at the Spier Festival, Stellenbosch in February 2003. His choral work Utlwang Lefoko La Morena was selected for performance at the ISCM World Music Days 2003 in Slovenia. From 2002 he was vice-president of NewMusicSA, and served as president from 2005-6.

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