Author Topic: Joy in the Congo: A musical miracle  (Read 1135 times)

Offline morrobay

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Joy in the Congo: A musical miracle
« on: April 20, 2014, 08:02:36 pm »
I rarely watch 60 Minutes anymore, but did tonight, and they showed an update of an extraordinary show that I remember from 2012.
If you are not uplifted by this, well.............you will be.



(CBS News) "Joy in the Congo" seems an unlikely -- even impossible -- title for a story from the Congo, considering the searing poverty and brutal civil war that have decimated that country. Yet in Kinshasa, the capital city, we found an unforgettable symphony orchestra -- 200 singers and instrumentalists defying the poverty, hardship, and struggles of life in the world's poorest country...and creating some of the most moving music we have ever heard. Follow Bob Simon to the Congo to hear the sounds and stories of the Kimbanguist Symphony Orchestra.

The following script is from "Joy in the Congo" which aired on April 8, 2012. Bob Simon is the correspondent. Clem Taylor and Magalie Laguerre, producers.

Beauty has a way of turning up in places where you'd least expect it. We went to the Congo a few weeks ago, the poorest country in the world. Kinshasa, the capital, has a population of 10 million and almost nothing in the way of hope or peace. But there's a well-kept secret down there. Kinshasa has a symphony orchestra, the only one in Central Africa, the only all-black one in the world.

It's called the Kimbanguist Symphony Orchestra. We'd never heard of it. No one we called had ever heard of it. But when we got there we were surprised to find 200 musicians and vocalists, who've never played outside Kinshasa, or have been outside Kinshasa. We were even more surprised to find joy in the Congo. When we told the musicians they would be on 60 Minutes, they didn't know what we were talking about but, still, they invited us to a performance.


We caught up with them as they were preparing outside their concert hall, a rented warehouse. As curtain time neared, we had no idea what to expect. But maestro Armand Diangienda seemed confident and began the evening with bang.


The music, Carmina Burana, was written by German composer Carl Orff 75 years ago. Did he ever dream that it would be played in the Congo? It wouldn't have been if it hadn't been for Armand and a strange twist of fate. Armand was a commercial pilot until 20 years ago when his airline went bust. So, like ex-pilots often do, he decided to put together an orchestra. He was missing a few things.


Bob Simon: You had no musicians, you had no teachers, you had no instruments.


Armand Diangienda: Yes.


Bob Simon: And you had no one who knew how to read music?


Armand Diangienda: No, nobody. Nobody.


Armand's English is limited. He preferred speaking French, Congo's official language.


Bob Simon: When you started asking people if they wanted to be members of this orchestra, did they have any idea what you were talking about?


Translation for Armand Diangienda: In the beginning, he said, people made fun of us, saying here in the Congo classical music puts people to sleep.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/joy-in-the-congo-a-musical-miracle-04-06-2012/
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Offline morrobay

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"Do you mind if I smoke?"
"I don't care if you shoot up."