Wednesday morning we rehearsed again ourselves, and then rehearsed with the Draakies and the Saskatoon Girls Choir, who joined us for the concert that afternoon. The performance was a triumph. Larry Hoenig said it was the best concert of children’s choirs he had ever heard in his entire life. Anne Odland said it was the “shortest longest” concert she had ever been too. (Three hours! but delightful) The Draakies opened the concert, followed by the girls, and then us. The boys were nervous, as they had witnessed the excellent singing of one of the world’s great boychoir. Boy, I wish they got nervous all the time, because hey turned in a stunning performance. Nothing like a little competition to get the boys pumped. They were on their game in a way that only happens on tour. Singing together every day really allows us to take things to “the next level.” The director of DBC raved about “The Word Was God”, and had said earlier that day that our treble sound is one he admires. Quite the compliment. Oh, and the trebles sang “Ise the Bye” for the Canadians. They loved it.

Link to the pics in the set: Drakensberg 2

The second half of the concert was largely the DBC singing their South African folk song set. Wow! The only thing you can say. The songs, the dancing, the precision, the color. It’s like nothing you’ve ever seen from a children’s choir. All the young singers from the US and Canada came down to the stage for the final song – what else but Shosholoza. It was quite a moment. We also sang “Hope for Resolution” and “I Need You To Survive” together. Usually, I’m not a fan of mass choirs. The singers are packed in like sardines and the music-making is not very tight. But the wonderful space allowed for lots of singers to have enough room to hear themselves and “let their bodies sing,” as I like to say. It was very moving.

After the concert, all the singers went to an island in the middle of a lake at the resort and had a traditional braai, along with a dance party. The adults were treated to a “Christmas in July” dinner at the resort restaurant. Our boys came in and serenaded the guests of the resort. They were a big hit singing “We Are the Boys,” “Praise His Holy Name,” and the South African medley.

Link to the pics in the set: Drakensberg Concert

The next day we departed our friends at DBCS. It was a great reunion from our short time together in Philadelphia, and we made an even stronger connection here in South Africa. Everyone agrees on both sides that this is a musical friendship that will continue for a long time to come. So much so that they’re taking the now-defunct Harlem Boys Choir arrow off their mileage post and replacing it with the Keystone State Boychoir. Yeah! Made us think back to our trip to Antarctica. I hope Alejo put our arrow up on their mileage post.