Accra-based choral group, Harmonious Chorale, has swept three gold medals at the ongoing 2018 World Choir Games at the Sun Arena -South Africa.
Ghana’s first ever representatives at the event, the group, directed by “Oye” composer, James Varrick Armaah, attained gold medals across the “Musica Sacra with Accompaniment” category (O16) as Level IV winners with 23.74 points, “Mixed Choirs” category (O9) as Level I winners with 20.73 points, and in the “Scenic Folklore” category (O27) where the placed first with 22.80 points.
The choir rendered songs as “La Nuit” by Jean–Philippe Rameau, Lift Every Voice and Sing by J. Rosamond Johnson, arr. Roland Carter, MemaM’aniso by George Mensah Essilfie and “AsedaNkaNyame” by Armaah. They also sang “Cantique de Jean Racine” by Gabriel Fauré, John Rutter’s This is the Day, Henry Purcell’s “Thou Knowest, Lord”, “Abofo Rekyin” by Newlove Annan in the Category 16, Musica Sacra with Accompaniment, ‘Yaa Amponsah”, arranged by George Mensah Essilfie, “Everybody Bring Your Calabash”, and “Oye”.
Formerly known as the Choir Olympics, the World Choir Games, organized by the Interkultur Foundation for choirs across the globe, ran under the theme, “Tshwane 2018”, and witnessed participation from over 300 choirs from 50 countries. Ghana’s contingent comprised 52 members; 44 singers, 4 keyboardists, 2 trumpeters, and Sound Engineer, Dominic Ansa-Asare.
The 10th edition, this is the first time the biennial competition is being held in Africa. The competition is designed in two parts: the Open Competition and the Champions competition.
By competing this year, and picking up more than one gold medal at this year’s event, Harmonious Chorale becomes eligible to take part in the in the coveted “Champions Competition”, which is otherwise closed to new entrants.
This year’s event ends, July 14.
Resident choir at the Rev. Dr. Joyce R. Aryee -led Salt and Light Music Ministry, Harmonious Chorale, among Ghana’s foremost performing arts groups, was established in 2005 as a quartet, and bloomed into a a fully-fledged Choir in October 2007.
They’re recipients of laurels as the GH Youth Choir Choral Awards (Best Choral Group 2015 & 2016), Excellence Leadership Awards (ExLA awards 2015), Exla Award for Arts & Entertainment Personality of the Year (Gold Category), MOGO Awards 2015 (Best Choral Group), and Christian Community Microfinance Limited (CCML) Music awards 2014 (Best Choral Song 2014). They were also recently named “Best Choral Group” at the Shine Awards 2018.