Fezeka’s Voice (2009)
The Fezeka High School Choir may be national champions, but their school sits in one of the most deprived areas in South Africa. Guguletu township, like most ghettos within South Africa, is infected by many of the hardships brought on by extreme poverty; murder, rape, hunger and disease. But the children of today's South Africa face an even greater hurdle than those physical barriers, they face the challenge of learning beyond the confines of their segregated history and reaching above the positions politicians have put them in.
No one understands this more than Phumi Tsewu who was born and raised during the apartheid era, who watched Nelson Mandela walk free in 1994 and who now knows that the only way for black South Africans to claim their right to a free and just society is to teach its children that they are worthy of it.
This film follows Phumi as well as three of his most talented singers; Busi, 16, Nokwanda, 17, and Zukisa, also 17 as they, along with the rest of the choir, gear up for the trip of a lifetime. They have been invited to perform in England as part of the Salisbury International Arts Festival; a monumental event, not only because it will be Phumi’s first opportunity ever to take his choir abroad, but also because for all 77 kids, it will be their first time outside the borders of South Africa.
It is almost unheard of for a choir of this size to gain full sponsorship for a trip abroad and so it is a magical time for Fezeka's choir as they begin to understand what it is to feel wanted, accepted, proud.