A Kumasi-based ensemble – the Kumasi Symphony Orchestra – is set to be officially launched to the general public on March 6, 2022, with a concert in the Garden City.
The orchestra, an amalgamation of the Largoseismiq Orchestra of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and the New Apostolic Orchestra, Kumasi Central, will serve as a crucial tool in promoting written and unwritten traditional music of the region and across the world.
The launch concert, dubbed the Symphony of Culture, will be held at the New Apostolic Church, New Amakomin Kumasi. It will see the 50-member orchestra perform alongside some institutional choirs based in the region – like the Pax Choir and University Choir of the KNUST.
Attendees will be treated to renditions from great composers like Professor Joseph Hanson Kwabena Nketia, Dr. Ephraim Amu, George Mensah Essilfie, Mr. J.M. T. Dosoo, Philip ComiGbeho, Michael Kofi Amissah, Newlove Kojo Annan, Osei Boateng and Sam Asare Bediako with tunes like ‘Otomfo’, ‘Abrante3’, ‘Adansekronkron’, ‘Ghana Anyigba’ and Africa’s first Blues ‘YaaAmposah’.
Legendary folklore musician Agya Koo Nimo will be Guest Speaker for the event. He will deliver a presentation on the topic ‘Music as a Vital Ingredient for the Education of the Child’.
The Director of the Kumasi Symphony Orchestra, Benjamin Ansah, said the event’s essence is to instil patriotism, especially in younger people, by reigniting love for traditional music.
“The music to be rendered will be a reflection of our patriotism and culture as Ghanaians. The aim is to project Ghana’s culture and its legends in the local music industry,” he said.
With about 50 percent of the Orchestra members being between the ages of eight and 13 years, he expressed optimism that the right foundation is being laid for a long-lasting project.
“J.H.K Nketia’s music, when understood from his socio-cultural circumstances, was mostly about Akan traditional music and dance and creative verbal expressions. These were all based on exposure to his cultural background, colonial encounters and personal philosophies.
“With the patronage of Emeritus Archbishop Akwasi Sarpong and Reverend Dennis Asibuo, the orchestra has been guided in its quest to be culturally identified worldwide and lift the flag of Ghana high,” he said of some key influences.
He noted that music is the best vehicle to convey cultural values and inspirational messages, while stressing the need for support to help make the Orchestra a national feature.