UMLAZI SCHOOL CHOIR ROCKS KING SHAKA AIRPORT
Members of the award winning “Just for Joy” Gospel Choir most of whom are from Ogwini Technical School performing at King Shaka Airport in Durban
There is an abundance of undiscovered talent waiting for an opportunity to express itself.
This was very evident when the little known “Just for Joy” Gospel Choir from Ogwini Technical School in impoverished Umlazi, grabbed attention at the Durban Airport. Most of the Choir members had never visited an airport before.
Venturing out of Umlazi was a new experience for these youngsters who enthusiastically bundled into a cramped taxi for their first real public performance.
The opportunity for the Choir came by chance. Dawn Harrison, an Educator Development Consultant and a singer / performer was co-coordinating a CAPS Training Workshop by THSBS for Teachers at Ogwini School. She heard the Choir practicing and her attention was captured by the beautiful voices and raw talent of the Choir.
“Quite co-incidentally whilst listening to the Choir I received a call from a colleague, Don Leffler of the Tourism Centre of Excellence” said Dawn. “He was looking for a group of young gospel singers to perform at King Shaka Airport. I had no hesitation in recommending the Ogwini Technical School Gospel Choir”.
Choir mentor, Mondli Ngcobo, and Choir Coach and Composer, Mfanafuthi Sibiya, seized the chance for his Choir to perform in public. Says Dawn, “ Mondli was thrilled at the opportunity for the Choir, known as “Just for Joy”, to perform in public.”.
The talented, award winning Gospel Youth Choir from Ogwini Technical School in Umlazi, Durban drew crowds at King Shaka Airport.
Monli said “I had no hesitation in accepting the invitation for the Choir to perform. We had to do some quick thinking because we didn’t have costumes or transport for the 19-strong Chaor members. I quickly calculated our costs and asked that as a performance fee>”
Don Leffler said “I wanted to arrange a special traditional farewell for a friend and colleague, Lisa Bradshaw of Challenge-Activ, who was leaving for France. Lisa has selflessly given so much to supporting challenged communities. Lisa is passionate about South Africa and its peoples. It was, therefore, incredibly exciting to find new African talent which would enjoy sharing its skills at the Airport when Lisa passed through the Departures Hall.”
Dawn Harrison commented “we were blown away when we saw the Choir arrive at the Airport dressed in traditional outfits. They sang beautifully and drew large crowds as they sang and danced their way through the Airport to the Departures Hall where they performed the South African Anthem, Shosholoza and other African favourites”.
Choir mentor, Mondli Ngcobo, said “our Choir was so excited to perform and to receive such an enthusiastic response and positive support from the people at the Airport.”
Choir Coach, Mfanafuthi Sibiya, said “We especially enjoyed the German traveler and his young son who kept requesting us to sing Shosholoza over and over again.”
The Choir Mondli said “was thrilled at the spontaneous reaction by a smiling Lisa Bradshaw who snapped photo’s and joined in the singing and dancing. We think we gave Lisa and her sons, Jeremy and Joshua, a memorable African farewell”.
Jeremy, Joshua and Lisa Bradshaw saying farewell at King Shaka Airport in Durban en route to France where Lisa runs Chalet Flori in Morzine on the French Alps and owns Challenge-Activ
Dawn Harrison and Don Leffler are determined to assist Mondli, Mfanafuthi and the Ogwini High School Gospel Choir to gain experience and build the Choir. Says Dawn “I would love to capture the Choir on You Tube so that others can delight in their talent.”
The Choir needs exposure and the opportunity to raise funds for equipment and costumes. Mondli and Mfanafuthi offer their coaching and mentoring skills at no cost and are dedicated to promoting the Choir’s talents. They need support from the KZN community.”
Lisa Bradshaw shortly before her departure to France presenting sport shirts on behalf of DPHS (Durban Preparatory High School) to Light Providers NGO and History Makers Soccer Team at KwaNyuswa at Valley of 1 000 Hills.