Music » Critics' Picks

Soweto Gospel Choir

Saturday, February 11, at the Edison Theatre (6445 Forsyth Boulevard, on the campus of Washington University)

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The Soweto Gospel Choir, a South African troupe that includes some 30 members, is one of the most inspiring musical performances you'll see this year. Under the direction of choir leaders David Mulovhedzi and Beverly Bryer, the group delivers elegiac layers of harmony in eight African languages from eleven separate regions of that continent. Performances termed "spellbinding" and "masterful" have ushered a new radiance into the world-famous South African gospel scene, opening up the genre to reggae, rock and hip-hop influences. While its repertoire focuses on traditional Zulu, Xhosa and Sotho gospel songs, the choir is also known for performing covers of Otis Redding and Jimmy Cliff numbers. Audiences, God-fearing or not, will be transformed.

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