Ghana to host International
Choral Music awards
Story: Godwin Yirenkyi
By way of diversifying the country’s attraction offers so as to bring more visitors into the country, the Ghana tourist Board (GTB), in collaboration with Musical consult, a professional organizer in international Musical Concerts, has embarked on plans to hold an International Choral Festival in Ghana in 2012.
The premier event will take place in Accra, Kumasi and Cape coast.
Mrs. Jodie Breckenridge, concert organizer and promoter, said the choral festivals have been taking. Place in many countries in Europe like Germany, the Czech Republic, Italy, Sweden, Belgium and cited the Advent Sing event which comes off every November in Vienna, Austria, to buttress her point.
Ghana is the only African country to host the event, she said, Describing Ghana as a wonderful and exciting destination; Mrs. Breckenridge disclosed that for some years now, individual choral groups had been coming to the country and enjoying the richness of Ghanaian music, sharing their gifts of song with people in villages along the way, performing at individual church activities, and learning the realities of African life.
Others have participated in drum and choral workshops focused on Ghanaian choral works at the University of Ghana, together with an evening Friendship Concert at the Osu Presbyterian Hall Accra.
She said it was based on these experiences that Ghana was formally positioned to host the festival which would draw participants from many countries. When explained that those participating would pay for their won trip, while some would even be accompanied by family members.
Mr. Manfred Hilker co-organizer of the event said the musical talent here is so good that in his view, ‘Choral music should be a synonym for Ghana.
He described the National Theatre as being a high quality venue, acoustically.
The programme is endorsed by the Ministry of Tourism and the Nation Commission on Culture. The Chairman of the GTB Board, Mr. Edem Kpodo, also gave the board’s blessing to the proposal saying, ‘l feel strongly that this is one area that Ghanaians and outsiders will enjoy’.
Speaking about the benefits to be derived from the event, Fulius Debrah, Executive Director of the GTB said participants would also travel to other towns and villages and patronize various services of the private sector of tourism.
He said besides the cultural exchanges, the event would also help resuscitate the warning interest in choral music in the country and urged choral groups to get ready to learn and share their skills with their counterparts from the participating countries.
Other benefits for the country will be the patronage of Ghanaian hospitality services such as hotels, restaurants, and transport among others, together with the patronage of handicrafts.
He added that holding the International Choral Festival would further help project the country’s image to the world at large. The festival should afford musicians the opportunity to perform alongside local choirs at unique and historic venues like Cape Coast Castle for large Ghanaian audiences, as well as visiting other parts of the country where in the past some groups have forged social contact with local communities, helping with the construction of schools and adoption of other projects.
The formal launch would be performed later after a promotional tour of the United States and a few details worked out, Mr. Ben Anane Nsiah, Special Events Manager of the GTB, told times weekend.
Times Week Page: 14 Saturday, November 27, 2010