Soweto Gospel Choir members wearing brightly colored costumes and standing in front of a brightly colored outdoor stage

Soweto Gospel Choir – 'HOPE – It's Been a Long Time Coming'

October 16, 2022 | Yardley Hall

Past Event

Winner of the 2019 Grammy Award for Best World Music Album, the world’s most critically acclaimed choir brings its 'Hope' concert to North America and Canada for the first time.

In its concert of “HOPE – It's Been a Long Time Coming,” commemorating and remembering South Africa’s Freedom Movement and the Civil Rights Movement in the U.S., three-time Grammy-winning Soweto Gospel Choir brings joy and inspiration to all of us.

An unforgettable night starts with some of the South African freedom songs that inspired its Rainbow Nation, then moves to the United States with beautiful and heartfelt renditions of the music of the Civil Rights movement, featuring works by legendary artists Billie Holiday, James Brown, Otis Redding, Curtis Mayfield and the one and only Aretha Franklin.

Hailing from Soweto (South West Township), a town outside of Johannesburg and the home of Nelson Mandela and South Africa’s democratic movement, Soweto Gospel Choir continues to inspire audiences with its powerful blend of African gospel, freedom songs and international classics.

Comprising a lineup of some of South Africa’s best vocalists, these uplifting performers have shared the stage and collaborated with the biggest names in contemporary music: Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Beyonce, U2, Diana Ross, Peter Gabriel, Chris Martin, John Legend, Pharrell Williams, Jimmy Cliff, Ben Harper, Angelique Kidjo, Robert Plant, Celine Dion, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Hugh Masekela and Josh Groban.

Soweto Gospel Choir was formed in 2003 at the end of the apartheid era and during South Africa’s inspiring return to democracy. Taking part in some of the major historical events in the new democratic South Africa, Soweto Gospel Choir is proud to have performed on many occasions for the Father of their Nation, former President Nelson Mandela, and sadly, at his state funeral in South Africa and subsequent commemorative service at Westminster Abbey in London. 

The choir was similarly invited to perform at the funeral of the late President’s first wife, Winnie Mandela. The Choir’s patron is human rights activist and Noble Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu. The choir is proud to act as ambassadors for the Nelson Mandela Foundation.