…As LeSMA adds climate change theme to choral competition

MATHATISI SEBUSI

MASERU – Lesotho Schools Choral Music Association (LeSMA) will next year add a climate change educational theme in its annual choral competition, thanks to Improving Adaptive Capacity of Vulnerable and Food Insecure Populations in Lesotho (IACOV).

AICOV is a government project under the Ministry of Forestry, Range and Soil Conservation and the Ministry of Energy and Meteorology with technical assistance from WFP under the adaptation fund.

With sponsorship from IACOV, through choral music competition   LeSMA will sensitise children in primary and post primary schools across the country on how best they could live their lives without damaging the environment they live in.

President of Lesotho Choral Music Association, Lebakae Mokoena, said the competition is an annual event hosted under different themes, depending on the sponsor.

He said around September 2023 they will be focusing on choral music with climate change educational theme which will not only capacitate children on climate change but will also teach them how to rehabilitate and look after their environment.

Mokoena said the competition is an annual activity held in Lesotho by Basotho children in primary and post primary schools for the purpose of developing musical thinking abilities, art and creativity in children.

All children from primary and post primary schools are allowed to freely enter the competition having done the yearly prescribed music. He said the message conveyed through the music competition differs according to the sponsorship theme.

“As LeSMA, we take every responsibility to ensure that children in schools and almost everywhere are sensitised on how best they could live their lives without damaging the environment they live in, and through singing they learn almost everything beneficial to their day-to-day living.

“When we are sad, we sing; when we are happy, we sing; at weddings, we sing; and when a child is born, we sing, the list is endless. This explains why conveying messages through songs is the best strategy to use to teach emerging issues, especially to children,” Mokoena stated.

He said they have previously worked with sponsors like Metropolitan Lesotho, Sefalana Lesotho, Tšepo Book Shop, Christian Items, Sekake Maoto and Partners who provided a lot of their competition trophies for winning choirs, prize monies for best conductors, among others.

He said with support from the mentioned and future sponsors, they hope their competition will reach a level where they will invite musical orchestras into the country and develop their own country’s orchestra, musical composers and develop many musical artists.

Mokoena said since 2003, their competition has been hosted in three regions in rotation, Central Region (Maseru and Berea), Northern Region (Leribe and Botha Bothe) and Southern Region (Mafeteng, Mohale’s Hoek and Quthing). For the first time in 2023, the competition will move to the highlands (Qacha’s Nek, Mokhotlong and Thaba Tseka).

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