Change the world


The internationally acclaimed Nelson Mandela University Choir is set to continue inspiring audiences around the globe as the headline act for this year’s Isisusa Festival on Wednesday, 13 December at 7pm.

Since its inception in 1994, the University Choir has gained a steadfast reputation for its ability to successfully fuse a Western and African repertoire. It has won a number of international accolades and performed before presidents and royalty, such as President Nelson Mandela and the late British monarch Queen Elizabeth 11, around the globe.
On Thursday at 6.30pm, the Isisusa Fest ’22 will premiere live with a pre-recorded show on the University’s YouTube channel that is free for all music lovers.
The University choir will be joined by the Mandela University choir from George Campus and the Rhodes University Choir in what has been hailed as a tribute to the sentiment expressed by the late jazz legend Hugh Masakela.
“I got to where I am in life not because of something I brought to the world but through something I found – the wealth of African culture.”
Roughly translated from Zulu, isisusa means “celebration”.
The online performance which was filmed in August as a celebration of African culture is a continuation of the gains achieved during the coronavirus pandemic.
In 2020, during lockdown, the online Isisusa Fest ’20 reached a new global audience with its performances.  Nelson Mandela University was then one of a handful of South African universities to host online jazz events that year. 
The event, first staged in 2008 to showcase and encourage artistic activity among the youth, is part of the institution’s efforts to entrench the importance and benefits of arts, culture and heritage.
The 60-minute concert consists of three segments, each accompanied by a band. 
The highlight is a mass choir performance of the late Johnny Clegg’s Asimbonanga.  
The concert is hosted under the auspices of Arts, Culture and Heritage, with the choir ably led by conductor and manager, Ulagh Williams. 
In 2017, the choir was the only one from Africa to participate in the 3rd Shanghai International Choral Festival in Shanghai, China. 
Next year, as part of its ongoing efforts to partner with other institutions of higher learning, the Nelson Mandela University will participate in an international Sister Cities performance in Cape Town in February.

Contact information
Mrs Debbie Derry
Deputy Director: Communication
Tel: 041 504 3057