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Choirs to render Clap-and-Tap music

MOMPATI TLHANKANE
Lighthouse Theatre Director, Mashumba. PIC: KENNEDY RAMOKONE
In order to revive the not so popular Clap- and-Tap music in Botswana, Lighthouse Theatre Production will host a Clap and Tap music festival on September 24 at Botho University.

The festival will assemble two local choirs, Maatla Gospel Choir and Ditsala Moreneng. In order to add more spice to the Clap-and-Tap festival, Lejwe La Motheo Gospel Choir from South Africa will also be part of the festival.

Clap-and-Tap music has similarities of both traditional gospel music and choral music, but Clap-and-Tap has no instruments and it combines vocals with clapping hands in a way that creates a fine tune and tempo.

In a press brief recently, the director of Lighthouse Theatre, Mashumba Mashumba, said they will hold the festival a week before the 50th Independence celebrations in September. 

He said bringing a choir like Lejwe la Motheo that is big in South Africa will help revive Clap and Tap in Botswana. “We are still at an infant stage and our intention is to eventually bring different choirs under one roof,” he said. Mashumba said it’s costly to host such a festival therefore they are expecting sponsorship from various stakeholders like Liberty Botswana.

For his part, the chairman of Ditsala Moreneng, Ontiretse Sethora said they have been in existence for 18 years therefore they need all the support they

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can get. “We now have three albums and we have faced challenges on the way,” he said.

The music director of Lejwe La Motheo, Tebogo Chauke, said they will come all the way from Tembisa to support Lighthouse Theatre. “We want to satisfy everyone therefore we will bring our whole choir,” he said. Chauke said they want to bring the spirit of appreciation for Clap-and-Tap music and exchange musical knowledge. He said they will conduct workshops to exchange ideas. Chauke said they are planning to record a collaboration album afterwards.

The choirmaster of Maatla Gospel Choir, Pako Montwedi said as a new group, they came together with different objectives like preaching gospel through music of Clap-and-Tap. “The youth need music in order to curb drug and substance abuse. We want them to follow our way,” he highlighted.

Montwedi was quick to indicate that the government is not helping to improve Clap-and-Tap music in Botswana. “The growth is slow and we don’t have studios to record Clap-and-Tap music locally,” he said. Montwedi however said they will do their best at the festival in order to gain recognition.



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