Diaspora Events | The African children’s Choir LIVE Dec 29th – Lifetime Diaspora Award Recipients 2018 Edition.

Posted December 26, 2018 by Ugandan Diaspora News Team in Diaspora Events ~ 3,592 views


The African Children’s Choir is a choir made up of children ages 7 to 12 from several African nations. Since its inception, the choir has included children from Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, Nigeria, and Ghana. Many of the children have lost one or both parents to AIDS and other poverty-related diseases, and all of them are victims of extreme poverty.

The choir was founded in 1984 by Ray Barnett. Barnett was traveling in war-torn Uganda when he gave a small boy a ride from his destroyed home to a safer village. During their journey, the child did what he knew how to do best – he sang. That simple song of dignity and hope became the catalyst for a program that has changed the lives of thousands of children. From there the African Children’s Choir was born.

Rallying support from the west, Barnett conducted the first tour, in 1984. As the organization grew so did the needs of the children. The choir began selecting Kenyan children in 1990. By 2002, the first South African choir toured in North America. Music for Life has now facilitated over forty tours through the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

The choir serves as the main fund raising branch for its parent organization, Music For Life Institute, with proceeds from the choir’s work used to fund Christian education and relief efforts for African children affected by poverty and disease.

The choir has released a number of albums and DVDs over the years, and has performed at major events and venues around the world. The choir has appeared at the British House of Commons and the Pentagon, at some of the world’s most prestigious halls, including the Royal Albert Hall, the London Palladium, the International Club of Berlin and the Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels, Belgium. They also performed with Christian music legend, Bill Gaither in his Gaither Homecoming series.

In 2005, the choir achieved increased worldwide visibility through several highly publicized performances. They performed at the Live 8 concert in London with Mariah Carey, and were featured on The Tonight Show and The Ellen DeGeneres Show. In 2006, they performed at an event for and before the United Nations for its UNAIDS summit. In December 2006, they made a second appearance on The Tonight Show.

The choir has also recorded songs for the soundtracks of major motion pictures including Oprah Winfrey’s Beloved, Hotel Rwanda and Blood Diamond. The African Children’s Choir currently has two choirs on tour in the United Kingdom and Canada. These Choirs are composed of children from Uganda. The choir sang during the Canadian Idol season 4 finale.

On 25 April 2007, they performed as part of American Idol’s Idol Gives Back, singing “You Raise Me Up” with Josh Groban. They also performed on the finale of American Idol season 6 at the Kodak Theatre on 23 May 2007. The choir appears on Michael W. Smith’s 2008 album A New Hallelujah, which was live recorded during a worship concert in Houston.

In 2008, the choir sang for former President George W. Bush and recorded with Michael W. Smith. On 29 September 2009, the choir celebrated their 25th Anniversary at the Hotel Vancouver in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, where the choir held their first performance 25 years before. Special guests at the event included Bob Geldof who used to live in Vancouver where he used to work for the Georgia Straight, Paul Rodgers and Michael McDonald.

Also in 2009, the choir performed for Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni at Commonwealth Day in London, England. Alicia Keys sang with the choir at Black Ball Gala.

The choir sang for US Global Leadership Coalition honoring former First Lady and Senator Hillary Clinton. The choir sang “All You Need is Love” for the Playing for Change Campaign. In 2010, The choir was featured on “A Christmas Cornucopia” with Annie Lenox.

The choir were part of the “Commonwealth Band” who performed with the Military Wives at the Diamond Jubilee Concert in 2012. The choir also performed with two other choirs from the United States and France singing “What a Wonderful World” for the Playing for Change campaign.

The African Children’s Choir was privileged to be nominated during the 2013 annual Grammy Awards ceremony and their documentary ‘Imba Means Sing’ is featured on Netflix. The Uganda Diaspora Network will recognize this and their many other achievements with a lifetime achievement award during the annual Diaspora gala 2018 edition. Please join us for the LIVE performance at the Victoria ballroom – Saturday 29th Dec from 6:30pm

About the Author

Ugandan Diaspora News Team

Ugandan Diaspora News Online is an independent, non political news portal primarily aimed at serving Ugandans who work and reside outside Uganda. Our aim is to be a one stop shop for everything Ugandan and the celebration of our Ugandan heritage.


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