African children’s choir set to return

Heather Latter

The African Children’s Choir has performed several times in Fort Frances, most recently back in 2010.
But they are returning to the Townshend Theatre stage next Wednesday (Sept. 2) for a concert featuring well-loved children’s songs, traditional spirituals, and Gospel favorites.
Hosted by Bethel Baptist Church, Shirley Glueheisen said they are expecting an excellent turnout.
“This is the second time they have been at the theatre and the last time they were there, we had a full capacity,” she noted.
She added people came from all across the district for the show—and even from as far away as Dryden.
“Rather than have to turn somebody away after they’ve travelled a distance, we’re giving away free tickets,” Glueheisen said.
These are available at Lowerys and Brockie’s Jewellers in Fort Frances, Cloverleaf in Emo, and KBHW in International Falls.
Glueheisen is urging people to pick up their tickets as soon as possible to avoid any disappointment.
“They are an absolutely wonderful group,” she enthused.
“These little kids just melt your heart every time you see them.”
Glueheisen said members of the local Rainy River District Youth Choir will be joining the African Children’s Choir on stage for a song or two.
A free-will offering will be taken during intermission to support the African Children’s Choir programs, such as for education, care, and relief and development.
“Everything that is collected goes to them,” Glueheisen stressed, noting Bethel Baptist Church is paying for their expenses while they are here.
A number of items, such as CDs, T-shirts, and jewellery, also will be for sale that evening.
“It’s just a fabulous show,” Glueheisen reiterated. “You leave there and your heart is just on fire.
“Just the music, the liveliness of the children, and their song and dance, it’s just amazing.”
The African Children’s Choir is composed of African children aged seven-10.
“All of these children have gone through tragedy in their life,” Glueheisen said, noting many have lost one or both parents through the devastation of war, famine, and disease.
“For them to be that positive, despite what they have walked through, is amazing,” she remarked.
“We feel like we are so hard done by and yet when you see that kind of hope in children who have lost way more than we’ve lost, it just sets your heart on fire.”
“Music for Life,” the parent organization for the African Children’s Choir, works in seven African countries (Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Sudan, Nigeria, Ghana, and South Africa).
MFL has educated more than 52,000 children and impacted the lives of some 100,000 people through its relief and development programs during its history.
Its purpose is to help create new leadership for tomorrow’s Africa by focusing on education.
The African Children’s Choir has performed before presidents, heads of state, and, most recently, Queen Elizabeth II for her diamond jubilee.
It also has had the honour of singing alongside artists such as Paul McCartney, Annie Lennox, Keith Urban, Mariah Carey, Michael W. Smith, and other inspirational performers!
Most recently, the African Children’s Choir recorded some tracks with Sarah Hickman for a CD entitled “Love is a Journey.”
They also will have a small role in the upcoming “Pan” movie starring Hugh Jackman.
The African Children’s Choir is a non-profit humanitarian and relief organization dedicated to helping Africa’s most vulnerable children today so they can help Africa tomorrow.
The primary goal of the choir is to raise awareness of the need of destitute and orphaned children in Africa.
It also raises funds for continued development and support of the African Children’s Choir programs.