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Mensah Essilfie's 'Rejoice Africa' premiere by One Voice Choir: a Ghanaian choral art milestone
Mensah Essilfie's 'Rejoice Africa' premiere by One Voice Choir: a Ghanaian choral art milestone

Mensah Essilfie's 'Rejoice Africa' premiere by One Voice Choir: a Ghanaian choral art milestone

The enchanting premiere of Dr. George Mensah Essilfie's Rejoice Africa: The Awakening of the People by the One Voice Choir at the Awake and Build Africa 2024 event has left an indelible mark on the landscape of Ghanaian choral Music.


With its universal appeal and poignant social commentary, this enduring musical satire has firmly established itself as a cultural milestone, transcending geographical boundaries to captivate audiences worldwide.

This performance, held in collaboration with SingAfriChoral, a non-profit organization dedicated to celebrating and promoting Africa's singing heritage, showcased the depth of talent and the visionary spirit driving Ghana's musical renaissance.

 Under the direction of Mr. Samuel Arko Mensah, a lecturer in the Theater Department of the University of Education, Winneba, Ghana, and the able leadership of Mr. Derrick Antwi, the choir director, the One Voice Choir brought to life the rich narrative written by Dr. Essilfie, showcasing their pioneering zeal in staging this musical masterpiece.

"Rejoice Africa" unfolds as a four-act musical staged in the fictional nation of Xamba. Through the activism of siblings Imara and Jabari, vividly expressed in dialogues and songs, the narrative explores the challenges citizens face in the grip of ruthless warlords, leading to societal decline.

The musical strikes a fine balance between humor and seriousness, effectively encouraging introspection and sparking discussions about pressing issues such as corruption, violence, and the urgent need for positive change.

Dr. George Mensah Essilfie, the iconic composer behind this powerful production, shared insights into his creative process and highlighted the role of music as a catalyst for social change. His dedication to using music as a tool for storytelling and his vision to support emerging talents in African choral music highlighted the lasting impact of "Rejoice Africa."

He alluded to upcoming projects spotlighting emerging choral composers passionate about cross-cultural musical innovations, further enhancing the continent's cultural richness. He noted, notably, that the beauty of SingAfrichoral's musical endeavors, such as “Rejoice Africa,” is that they focus on the ordinary singer rather than the professional musician or dancer. This approach aims to improve performances of choral art music and stimulate a deeper interest in this musical genre.

SingAfriChoral's PRO, Mr. Emmanuel Mensah Okoe, praised the resounding success of SingAfriChoral in bringing out "Songs of Akotam" in June 2023, featuring the Harmonious Chorale, which was also highly successful. SingAfriChoral collaborated with another exceptional choir in less than a year to present "Rejoice Africa."

Mr. Okoe highlighted the positive reception and the immense talent showcased in both productions, emphasizing SingAfriChoral's dedication to preserving and promoting African art music through innovative cross-cultural approaches.

Similarly, the Music Director, Mr. Daniel Carrey Nyamekeh, extended commendations to the director of the musical, Mr. Samuel Arko Mensah (Univ of Education, Winneba, Ghana), Mr. Derick Antwi, the choir director,  One Voice Choir, instrumentalists, and production teams involved in "Rejoice Africa." He reaffirmed SingAfriChoral's commitment to advancing African musical excellence globally.

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