African choir directors


How can German choirs interpret African music so that an authentic piece of Africa will spring to live? This is only possible thanks to the exceptional choir direction by Eva Buckman, herself an excellent and well-traveled connoisseur of the black continent. She draws its musical richness firsthand, since for years now she is building a network with African choir leaders that give their songs and their choreography to the Moko choirs.


At the beginning of this fruitful cooperation there was a trip by the Mokolé choir to South Africa. Much to the surprise of the audience the program of this choir consisted exclusively of African songs. This led to the contact with Thabang Mokoena from South Africa and his Heidelberg Lesedi Show Choir. Meanwhile an intense cooperation with the South African musicians has grown out of it.


But West Africa, too, is a rich treasure trove of traditional hymns and gospel music. At the end of 2009 in the Ghanaian city of Accra Eva Buckman spotted the extremely talented young choir director Francis Baffoe, who has since enriched the choral repertoire with songs from Ghana.


But the journey is not over yet: Eva Buckmans vision is to explore the musical riches of Africa even further, get to know more talented African choir leaders and work with them and their choirs. For this musical bridge between the black and the white continent, a network of African music is created, which benefits both sides.


Choral work in and with Africa - that means an exchange of cultures using all your senses. It also means to support talented African musicians and to promote and bring the musical richness of Africa in return to Europe - on the basis of a fair give and take.


                       Picture: K. Dobhan