UJ Choir 2023 Celebration Concert: An Era’s Farewell

Each year, the University of Johannesburg Choir draws the curtailment of the choir year on a note of thanksgiving and celebration. We have so much to celebrate and be thankful for as we officially close a monumental era of being under the direction of Renette Bouwer. 

“I sensed an elevation in the artistic standard of UJC over the past ten years and the 2023 group has exceeded all expectations. At the recent KUESTA 2023, they showed that they can truly be counted amongst the best of the best in their league. Such a versatile, yet brilliantly sensitive instrument is any conductor’s dream”, says Bouwer. 

Renette’s continuous outpouring into young, passionate singers is testament to the reverberating legacy she leaves with UJ Choir. We honour her gift and innumerable contribution through a repertoire of timeless classics and contemporary gems. Join us on 20 October at St. Columba’s Presbyterian Church, Parkview, for our 2023 Celebration Concert. 

The concert will showcase music of Niel van der Watt, Don Macdonald, Kim Arnesen, Eriks Esenvalds, Rene Clausen and Kirby Shaw as well as the highly acclaimed works of Mbuso Ndlovu that won Best Composition at the Vryfees this year, conducted by the young and upcoming choral protege, Sizwe Mondlane. 

Tickets are now available on Plankton, R120 general admission and R80 for students. Click below to purchase yours.  

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For media inquiries, please contact Frank Modise on acmarketing.uj.ac.za.

About the UJ Choir 

UJ Choir has bloomed into a musical hybrid that reflects the struggles of the country’s past and hope for its future. Formed in 2005 from the former RAU Choir and RAU Chorale, the choir consists of students of the University that study a range of qualifications that do not include music. It has since raised the South African flag up high in Austria, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Poland, Slovakia, New York, Namibia and many more.  

Under the genius hands of renowned conductor Renette Bouwer, the choir’s travel and sound has earned them several awards and achievements over the years. Among these is the 2015 Overall Grand Prix recognition at the Slovakia Folk competition held in Bratislava. In 2016, UJ choir took South African audiences by storm at the Grahamstown National Arts festival stage and continued to do so, landing in 2nd place on South African intervarsity choir competition, Varsity Sing! on KykNet. In 2017, the choir embarked on a national tour in Stellenbosch, Knysna, Bloemfontein, Potchefstroom and Lichtenburg.  

In 2018, UJ Choir won two gold medals at the World Choir Games in Tshwane for two categories: Mixed Choirs (3rd place with 85%) and in the Folk Music category (category winners with 95%). Three months after their glorious win at the World Choir Games, the choir stunned Beijing, where they performed on invitation, at the International Beijing Chorus Festival in China. 

In 2019, UJ Choir was highlighted on a concert with the late African Jazz singer, Gloria Bosman, where they displayed their ability to adapt to different styles and musical genres. 

2020 marked a new era for the choir, through the release of its ninth album, When the Earth Stands Still, currently available on all digital music platforms.