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Manda Wilderness Choir Festival set for mid-August

Mozambique choirs are ready to showcase their talent at the 5th Annual Manda Wilderness Choir Festival on 16 August 2014.
In collaboration with the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, a charity which supports the arts and has committed to funding the Manda Wilderness Choir Festival for the next four years, the Manda Wilderness Community Trust provides an opportunity for sixteen villages of northern Mozambique to show off their skills.

Each choir consists of the finest choir members in the Manda Wilderness region, who spend countless hours preparing two songs to perform for a panel of judges and a crowd of supporters.

The £20,000 five-year grant from the Foundation, spread over five years, includes offering a three-month volunteer opportunity for a music student from the UK and creating a musical exchange with a UK choir.

Promoting unity among communities

"It's a fantastic event that promotes unity among the different communities, and gives an opportunity to our singers to learn and improve, as well as encouraging spiritual growth in the Manda Wilderness region," says Richard Stephano Mngulu, the Manda's Trust local Community Projects Manager.

"It's amazing to see the growth of the festival over the years, not just in terms of the audience but in the ability of the choirs," add says Nkwichi Lodge General Manager, Malcolm Turner.

The Manda Wilderness Community Trust, a UK-based charity that has organised the Festival since its inception, connects some of the least supported communities in an isolated corner of Mozambique to engage in sustainable development projects. The Trust also supports community events that provide training and foster unity in the region, and leads conservation in one of Africa's last true wildernesses. The Trust is committed to work at the pace of local communities and encouraging active collaboration between them.

Since the first Choir Festival in 2010, this event has also been supported by Nkwichi Lodge, an international award-winning eco-tourism establishment on the eastern side of Lake Malawi (or Lake Niassa as it is called on the Mozambican side) in the heart of the Manda Wilderness region.

The Festival is to be held on the steps of the historic Roman Catholic Church at Cobué, Northern Mozambique, on Saturday, 16 August at 5 pm. The event is free and open to the public.
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Stephen L. Bigger
If anyone would like to view videos from the 2013 Manda Wilderness Choir festival they can be viewed at
Posted on 11 Aug 2014 02:34