Duze NomShikaShika sings in isiZulu, isiXhosa, Sesotho
Duze expresses its connection and solidarity with South Africa through traditional songs.
Duze NomShikaShika is a group of enthusiastic music lovers in the Netherlands who exclusively sing traditional South African songs in languages such as isiXhosa, isiZulu and Sesotho. Our repertoire contains material we learned directly from choirs in South Africa. Our desire to sing these songs emanates from a genuine feeling of connection with the people of South Africa. We fully endorse Nelson Mandela’s words:
“SINGING CONNECTS PEOPLE AND STIMULATES SOLIDARITY”
“MUSIC HAS THE POWER TO CHALLENGE POLITICS”.
Founded in solidarity
Duze NomShikaShika was founded in the mid-1980s, out of concern for the South Africans suffering under the system of apartheid. During this period Duze NomShikaShika sang in solidarity with the people striving for change, peace and equality, based on mutual respect.
Through music we tried to contribute our bit to the Struggle by raising awareness in our own country and making our stance against apartheid known. In recent times we have continued to sing to maintain a focus on South Africa and its beautiful and powerful musical heritage.
Duze NomShikaShika in action
Duze NomShikaShika has several performances a year. We encourage audience participation during our concerts. We also offer workshops to interested groups or other choirs. Our Dutch audiences tell us that a Duze performance feels as if one has temporary been transported to South Africa.
Duze NomShikaShika and Nelson Mandela
In 2002 we were invited to sing for Nelson Mandela when he received the Four Freedoms Award from The Roosevelt Foundation in Middelburg, the Netherlands. Present among the many dignitaries at this event were Queen Beatrix and other members of the Royal Family, members of the cabinet and other world-famous individuals.
First study trip to South Africa in October 1999: Solidarity by singing together
In 1999 we visited South Africa and sang in workshops and joint performances with several South African choirs. We met up with musicians in the areas where they lived and worked and learnt about the important role of music in everyday life. It was an empowering experience for everyone who took part and it encouraged us to continue singing. We built and reinforced a bond and wanted to continue to express our solidarity by singing together – a powerful tool as South African history has shown.
Second study trip to South Africa in March 2004: Meeting various choirs
During this trip Duze NomShikaShika sang with the Khayelitsha Spiritual Choir and the Zwelihle Adult Choir. Duze organized a small-scale choir festival in Cape Town and in Hermanus / Onrus Rivier. Four South African choirs participated, two black choirs, the “Khayelitsha Spiritual Choir”, and “Pro Musica”, a choir of white singers with mainly classical European repertoire. When the Khayelitsha Spiritual Choir started to sing “Thina Thina”, a black friendship song, the entire hall of singers and audience raised the roof.
Third study trip to South-Africa in October 2013: Workshops and community singing
During this trip we visited Cape Town, Stellenbosch and Hermanus and we sang in the townships Zwelihle and Khayelitsha. In the latter we spent a considerable amount of time with the Khayelitsha United Mambazo Choir who taught us several new songs. In Zwelihle we sang with the Bana Bamoya Choir.
During this study trip we also had the wonderful opportunity to musically entertain the ‘Masibathande Senior Citizens Club’, a project for elderly people in Khayelitsha, initiated by Uthando (Love), a non-profit organization.
In South Africa songs are part of everyday life, unlike in Europe. The songs of Duze NomShikaShika’s choir repertoire reflect this. We too sing about love, loss, parties, grief, work, family, apartheid, religion and any other aspects of daily life.
Experience the energy of this authentic music in a performance by Duze NomShikaShika!
Fourth study trip to South-Africa in October 2019: Again workshops and community singing.
This trip brought us first to Soweto, where we were allowed to sing in the Regina Mundi Church. Then to Alexandra, another township near Johannesburg. There we have been singing with Palesa Afrika.
The next destination was Khayamandi, township in Stellenbosch There we learned a song from children of the Makupula School.
Finally we went to CapeTown, especially to Khaylitsha, where we sang again with the Khayelitsha United Mambazo Choir, and with Isibane se Afrika.
Of course we also visited Robben Island and we had the special honour to be guided by Christo Brand, the former prison guard of Nelson Mandela.