Rhema Church in Randburg, Johannesburg, was alive with the sound of music as school choirs filled the arena with their singing at the South African Schools Choral Eisteddfod on Tuesday 03 July, 2012.
The Eisteddfod is one of the Department of Basic Education’s flagship events. The competition, the largest of its kind in South Africa, brings together the cream of the crop of school choirs from around the country for an intense festival of musical delight. Thousands of learners from across the country are brought together to compete for the recognition as the best school choir in South Africa. The Eisteddfod accommodates learners from the entire schooling system in the preliminary rounds, up to and including the provincial competitions.
Now in its 11th year, SASCE is a proud partnership between the DBE, the Department of Arts and Culture, UNICEF, Via Afrika and Lovelife. The theme of this year’s competition is “Celebrating the Centenary Through Song”.
The event was officially opened by Deputy Minister of Basic Education, Mr Enver Surty MP, on Tuesday afternoon, who described the event as a kaleidoscope of song and dance.
“SASCE is a gift to the nation. The melody of young voices coming together to combat social ills, such as abuse and xenophobia,” said Deputy Minister Surty. “The talents of our precious children are a cultural treasure of our unique nation.”
Deputy Minister Surty reminded learners that although there would only be three eventual winners in each of the various categories, every learner who had made it to the national finals of the competition was already a winner.
“It has been an arduous journey and it has taken lots of effort, time and focus to get here. We are proud of you. Winners never quit!” said the Deputy Minister. “The choir masters too, have done exceptionally well. The presence of your schools here today is a testament to your hard work”.
The first day of the competition saw choirs of learners in the Intermediate Phase (Grades 4-7) compete in eight categories. Support for the various choirs was vocal, with each province boasting a strong contingent of travelling supporters who filled the hall with music in the breaks between the performances.
The competition is open to the public and tickets for the event will cost R20 per day and can be purchased at the door. The final day is Friday 06 July 2012.
Read the Deputy Minister's speech from Day 1 here.
Read the Minister's speech from Day 3 here.
Images from the event: