Enjoy the majesty of the Messiah in Pietermaritzburg

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The Pietermaritzburg Amateur Music Society (PAMS) Choir and members of the Pietermaritzburg City Orchestra will be performing Handel’s Messiah in the NG Kerk on the corner of Beverley and Morcom Roads, Prestbury (opposite the Botanic Gardens) at 2.30 pm on Sunday, November 15.

Joining the choir and baroque-sized orchestra, which will be led by Angus Kerr and conducted by Robin Walton, will be cellist Anneli Niebuhr, Jacques Heyns (harpsichord), tenor Smanga Cebekhulu, soprano Annari van Jaarsveld, contralto Margi Nel, and bass Andrew Butler.

This year’s concert will also pay tribute to the memory of renowned Pietermaritzburg choir conductor, Dr Joshua Radebe, who died in July aged 79.

In 1973 Radebe formed his own choir The Pietermaritzburg Choral Society. The choir gradually grew in numbers and reputation, leading to many awards and the launching of many a ‘vocal’ career. His repertoire was comprehensive, his influence immense. And, fittingly, his son, Andile, will be singing with the PAMS choir.

Smanga Cebekulu

Smanga Cebekulu

Durban tenor, Smanga Cebekhulu, is currently studying at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and has already gained much concert experience and has sung with the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra.

The other vocal soloists are all well-known to local audiences having performed with PAMS on previous occasions.

Tickets are R100. Book by phoning Ruth on 033 347 5464 or 072 235 1138, or at Pink Heather (Quarry Centre, Hilton) on 033 343 1965. Remaining tickets can be bought at the door.

For further information phone 033 347 0787.


Musician and Pietermaritzburg Choral Society founder, Dr Joshua Radebe, was a shining light and inspiration to young and old South Africans not only as a teacher, but more especially for his immeasurable contribution to the promotion of arts and culture in the form of his dedication to choral music.

He was the founder of the Pietermaritzburg Choral Society, which he took to great heights by participating in — and winning — several choral competitions, especially at National Eisteddfod level.

Joshua was awarded an honorary doctorate by the then University of Natal for his contribution to the arts in the province.

“A quiet, soft-spoken and a person who was always smiling, he remained humble even with all the recognition and accolades he received during his lifetime,” said Blade Nzimande, National Higher Education minister.

“Radebe played a huge role in uplifting choirs in and around his district by giving them an opportunity to showcase their talent. Dr Radebe will be remembered most for his love for music and mentorship,” said KZN Department of Arts and Culture spokesperson Lethukuthula Mtshali.


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