African Children's Choir to offer free plateau concert
By Tesa Glass / WNC News Share
CASHIERS-HIGHLANDS PLATEAU --The internationally-known African Children’s Choir is coming to the Cashiers-Highlands plateau. The choir is set to perform 7-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 25, in the sanctuary of Community Bible Church, which is at 3645 U.S. Highway 64 West, about seven miles from the crossroads.
“The choir was started by Ray Burnett,” said Tour Leader Amy Berry. “He was doing relief work in Uganda and met a young boy who needed a car ride. The boy had lost both his parents due to war, but during the car ride, the boy talked and was singing for his new friend.”
Ray was touched that he was singing with such joy, and decided that joy needed to be shared with the western world. The first choir performed in 1984 and since then more than 52,000 children have been educated.
African Children’s Choir is part of Music For Life, which provides thousands of impoverished children throughout Africa with education, discipleship and leadership skills needed to rise above their conditions in poverty to bring positive, lasting change for their families, communities and countries. The choir is composed of African children ages 7 to 10. In spite of the tragedy that has marred their lives, the children seek to inspire and bring hope through musical entertainment.
“I think it’s important for people just to be able to see the joy from the children and their love for the Lord and be inspired by their resilience,” Berry said. “It gives a different perspective of Africa.”
Cody Turner, worship and arts pastor at Community Bible Church, said this is the second time the choir has visited the Cashiers-Highlands plateau.
“We had them a little over a year ago,” Turner said. “We had a great experience hosting them for a couple of days and providing space for schooling. This time around, they contacted us. They loved their time in the mountains. They had an open concert date and we jumped on it. We’re excited about it.”
The concert is full of dancing, a drum ensemble and joyful singing. According to Berry, concertgoers should expect a high-energy performance.
The program features children’s songs, hand clapping, traditional spirituals and contemporary tunes.
The concert is free to the public, but “love offerings” will be collected. All funds collected go toward housing and educating the children.
“I just love that this tour they do sets them up education-wise,” Turner said. “When we take up an offering, the money funds the kids’ education all the way through college. It’s a great way for us to experience a different culture, and we get to pay it forward to their future. … We are able to enjoy them, and able to give back to them, too.”
For information, visit https://africanchildrenschoir.com/the-choir/.
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