With four selected traditional pieces from Africa, the La Youth Choir carried the audience, including Royal Singers, Sika Band, world-acclaimed musicians, away with the Ghanaian folk song “Pete Pete”.
After the performance of the Ghanaian folk song, the audience, most of whom were famous musicians from Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa, concluded that Africa had a culture that should be preserved and demonstrated in the songs we sing.
The event formed part of Ghana's third Founders Day Celebration and second anniversary celebration of the La Youth Choir, dubbed ‘Celebration of Ghanaian Composers’. Among the composers celebrated were Dr Ephraim Amu, Prof J.H. Nketia, Gyimah Larbi, Gaddiel Acquaah and Kweku Onovwerosuoke. The choir performed songs such as “Asem yi di ka,” by Dr Amu, “Nkyirmma Nnye Bi” by Prof Nketia and “Onso Nyame Ye” by Gaddiel Acquaah.
The occasion also marked the beginning of a three-day program to be climaxed with a performance by the National Symphony Orchestra and the La Youth Choir at the National Theatre in Accra.
Most of the foreign musicians Journalists spoke to said Africa had a rich culture in music which had been well preserved and developed. “The style and distinguished features outlined in the song was perfect and more must be learnt from your traditional people,” they stated.
Ten instrumentalists from Nigeria, led by Fred Onovwerosuoke, also put up performances with the flute, violin and piano in “Ogiribo”, which means the storm and “Domenshigbe”, meaning market day.
With the objective of displaying the richness of African culture, the Director of International Centre for Music and Dance, Prof Nketia, urged musicians to make use of all resources available in Africa to present their music in a special way that would be pleasant to the ear.
According to him, music must express feelings and a high level of craftsmanship. Speaking on the topic “The potential and role of African music in the contemporary world”, Prof Nketia said churches must help to promote African values. He urged African choral groups to emulate the La Youth Choir.
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