The UP Youth Choir is part of a generation of South Africans that have, as a reference point in their history, the struggle for freedom and peace. This multi-racial teenage choir represents the colours of peace by embracing the qualities that diversity brings to the table. The singers are part of the born-free generation that embodies the philosophies of our international icon, Nelson Mandela. The concept Ubuntu, the Nguni term that means: ‘human kindness’ that in the philosophical sense translates to ‘the universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity, is part of the fabric of this unique choir from South Africa.
Among the choristers in our choir can be seen as the immense bonds of friendship and collegiality that develop among these young people, and one would be similarly astounded by the beautiful music they can make together. The calibre of the performances and the audience reception of their music, whether at an informal concert, or an international choral festival, demonstrate that there is something unique about this choir. There is something magical about seeing young people working co-operatively, making music, and sharing a profound lesson with us all – that it doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, or what your personal priorities are; but instead, what you seek to gain from an experience, how you are required to work hard to succeed, and how collaboration often reveals itself as a solution to the many problems our society needs to resolve.
The choir was established in January 2001 and since 2005 conducted by Lhente-Mari Pitout. The choir forms part of the multi-choir model of the University of Pretoria. The regional multicultural youth choir consists of 90 singers between the ages of 14 and 19 years old from 34 schools in the greater Tshwane area in Gauteng South Africa.
They represent the full diversity of South Africa and embracing this diversity gave this wonderful youth choir their unforgettable passionate sound and musicality.