Members of the worship group of Graaff-Reinet’s NGK visited Aberdeen and joined the local congregation at the town’s NGK on 25 November for a wonderful evening of Christmas carols and dramatic presentations.
After a short video and song, the Graaff-Reinet group started their performance with a dramatic presentation by Ds Ben van Tonder. His tale of the composition of the much-loved Christmas carol Joy to the World led into a rendering of the carol, with alternate verses in English and Afrikaans.
The Graaff-Reinet group, comprising singers ranging in age from scholars to pensioners, performed in many different combinations, including a men’s choir and ladies’ choir, which added to the interest for the congregation. There were also many opportunities for members of the congregation to join in, which most did with gusto.
A variety of instruments was also used to change the pace and feel, with Ben van Tonder and DJ van Wyk on guitar, and Fredre Lategan on piano. Local organist, the church’s beloved Tineke Anderson, came out of retirement and accompanied a few of the carols, and the versatile DJ van Wyk also strummed away on his ukulele for some items.
In between the familiar popular carols was one composed by the group’s pianist Fredre Lategan, who is originally from Aberdeen. The haunting Maria se Wiegeliede was performed by the ladies in the group.
Near the end of the concert, an Aberdeen choir performed two items, and much credit should be given to Gina de Beer for her perseverance in getting the group together. They performed Silent Night, and a Sotho song, Salani, both of which were very well received.