WATCH: Choirs unite ahead of Korea-Africa Summit

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Korea-Africa Summit
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Concerts celebrating the cultural richness of South Africa and South Korea are setting the stage for the first-ever Korea-Africa Summit in June.

Acclaimed South African choirs joined forces with Ensemble Enus, a group of Korean singers who perform on international stages.

The concerts took place in Johannesburg and Gqeberha (Port Elizabeth) on May 10 and 12, respectively.

Korea-Africa collaboration

The cultural collaboration was organised by the Embassy of the Republic of Korea and the Korean Cultural Centre in South Africa (KCCSA), in partnership with Nelson Mandela University.

It was a celebration to commemorate the upcoming Korea-Africa Summit, scheduled to be held in South Korea in June.

The Johannesburg Jeugkoor/Youth Choir and Nelson Mandela University Choir brought enchanting musical harmonies interwoven with the Korean singers’ performances.

SA’s top instrumentalists, the Brooklyn Theatre Salon Ensemble in Johannesburg and distinguished instrumentalists in Gqeberha, accompanied the performances.

Korea-Africa Summit
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Bridging cultures through music

The concerts featured a diverse repertoire, including traditional Korean folk songs, contemporary art songs of Korea, and international choir classics by celebrated South African composers such as Péter Louis van Dijk and John Knox Bokwe.

Famous opera arias and musical numbers were also part of the programme!

The highlight of the concerts was the finale, where all performers came together to sing ‘Plea from Africa’ by John Knox Bokwe.

This heartwarming moment cemented the ground for the ongoing and future friendship and partnership between the two countries.

Immersing in Korean culture

Prior to the concerts, guests were invited to an accompanying reception event where they could experience various aspects of Korean culture.

Korea-Africa Summit
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This included trying on traditional Korean clothes (or ‘hanbok’), tasting Korean food, and enjoying K-pop performances.

As South Africa and South Korea continue to strengthen their ties, cultural collaborations like these concerts play a crucial role in fostering understanding and appreciation between the two nations.

Korea-Africa Summit

With the Korea-Africa Summit on the horizon, events celebrating the rich cultural heritage of both countries set the stage for a promising future of friendship and partnership.

The event is set to take place on 4 and 5 June, 2024, bringing together delegations from African countries, international organizations, and key figures from Korean and international business communities, academia, civil society groups, and press.

The summit will focus on the theme “The Future We Make Together: Shared Growth, Sustainability, and Solidarity.”

This slogan encapsulates the spirit of collaboration and mutual benefit that the summit aims to foster between South Korea and African nations.

As the first-ever Korea-Africa Summit, this event marks a significant milestone in the relationship between South Korea and the African continent.

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