By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – The African Children’s Choir will perform two concerts in Oklahoma City on Sunday, December 1. The first show will take place at the Avery Chapel AME Church, 1425 N. Kelham Avenue, at 10:45 a.m.
The second performance will take place at 7 p.m., at the First Church, 131 NW 4th Street.
Celebrating their 50th choir to tour from Africa since the group’s founding in 1984, this year’s program is themed, “Just As I Am,” a journey into the past with glimpses into the future.
The African Children’s Choir is a nonprofit humanitarian and relief organization dedicated to helping Africa’s most vulnerable children. The organization’s goal is to help create new leadership for tomorrow’s Africa, by focusing on education and developing leadership.
“These amazing children could use the skills the choir afforded them for themselves, but they don’t, they give back to their communities, some have become doctors, others engineers, it makes me very proud to see,” said Suzanne Nelson, African Children’s Choir International Director.
The concert will feature well-loved children’s songs, traditional spirituals and gospel favorites.
Music for Life (MFL), the parent organization for the African Children’s Choir, works in Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, and South Africa. MFL has educated over 52,000 children and impacted the lives of over 100,000 people through its relief and development programs during its history. MFL 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 the Queen of England, Queen Elizabeth II, for her diamond jubilee.
The Choir has also had the honor of singing alongside artists such as Paul McCartney, Annie Lennox, Keith Urban, Mariah Carey, Michael W. Smith, and other inspirational performers.
In 1984, human rights activist Ray Barnett founded the African Children’s Choir when he was called on during Uganda’s civil war to help the many thousands of orphaned and starving children.
“Inspired by the singing of one small boy, we formed the first African Children’s Choir to show the world that Africa’s most vulnerable children have beauty, dignity and unlimited ability,” Barnett said.
The African Children’s Choir will also perform on Tuesday, Dec. 3 at Sulphur United Methodist Church, 2022 W. 14th Street at 7 p.m.
All concerts are free and open to the public. A free-will offering is taken at the performance to support African Children’s Choir programs, such as education, care and relief and development programs.
For more information, visit africanchildrenschoir.com.