Hailing from Soweto, the South African ensemble is compromised of the city's best talent, plucked from the choirs of Soweto's churches. The group has backed musical legends like U2, Queen, Peter Gabriel and the Eurythmics and performed for the likes of Archbishop Desmond Tutu and former U.S. President Bill Clinton.
The Performing Arts Society of Acadiana's Apiyo Obala says of the choir, "In addition to being entertainers, they are also global ambassadors for Nelson Mandela's 46664 Foundation, which was created specifically to raise awareness and money to fight against AIDS in Soweto. HIV & AIDS affect everyone globally, but the highest majority of people who are affected live in the Soweto township of South Africa."
Partnering with the Southwest Area Health Education Center and the Africa Diaspora Heritage Committee, PASA presents "Get Up, Do Something Day," a day to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS and its effect on the Acadiana community. On Saturday, April 21, at Parc Sans Souci in downtown Lafayette, there will be a community health fair, live entertainment featuring local artists as well as step teams from Northside and Comeaux high schools. The event will also feature a teen panel discussion with a focus on HIV/AIDS and other problems facing Acadiana's youth. Free and confidential HIV/AIDS testing will be also available on site, as well as 30 different community organizations. Obala says that since the hurricanes of 2005, Acadiana has seen a surge of new residents. "There's even more of a need now to educate and make people aware of the resources that are available to them within their community," she says.
But the day of events will do more than focus on just HIV awareness. "There's another ongoing theme of a cultural connection to Africa through music," Obala says. "It's going to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS, but there's also going to be a music panel discussion that will include local artists like Marc Broussard and Roy Anthony. They're not only going to talk about African music and how it's influenced their music, they're going to also perform selections from their own repertoire that demonstrates what the panel's discussing. We just thought this would be a great way to expand what PASA normally does with its outreaches, like master classes and workshops. We do entertain, but another focus of ours is education and awareness. It was a chance to do something different but that has a direct impact on the health of our community."
The Performing Arts Society of Acadiana closes out its season with a live performance by the Soweto Gospel Choir at the Heymann Center for the Performing Arts on Sunday, April 22, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster, online at www.pasa-online.org, or by calling (337) 262-8686. "Get Up and Do Something Day" will be held Saturday, April 21, at Parc Sans Souci in downtown Lafayette. For more information, call (337) 237-2787. The event will raise awareness about HIV/AIDS as well as African music and its influences on American music. The community health fair will also include panel discussions and offer free HIV/AIDS testing.
Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
Pat Bowlen steps down; typhoon caused Taiwan plane crash; Arizona execution botched and more national and international news for Thursday, July 24, 2014.
Thousands of people who bought health insurance through the marketplace created by the federal health care overhaul face price hikes next year that could top 10 percent.
Three bedroom traditional Lafayette home or three bedroom Breaux Bridge home
Style market slated for old Artesia
The city prosecutor has released the case file for Lafayette Parish School Board member Tehmi Chassion’s simple battery complaint against Superintendent Pat Cooper, and the seven witness statements given to police illustrate two very different scenarios.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Louisiana fell one spot in an annual national ranking of child well-being that looks at poverty, education and health access.
A federal judge has decided he doesn't need to hear more arguments in the case of a gay couple who want a Louisiana marriage license.
Saints again bring playoff aspirations into 2014 campaign.
New details in the case against the man arrested for last week’s bomb threat and bank robbery has surfaced, including a MidSouth Bank surveillance video showing the alleged suspect attempt an early-morning bank robbery.
Citing conflicting witness accounts, the city prosecutor will not pursue Tehmi Chassion’s allegation of simple battery against Superintendent Pat Cooper.
Smoked meat, fresh sides and the best boudin around
Mellow Mushroom Pizza Bakers opens on Johnston.
Cirque du Soleil effortlessly combines circus art with beloved Michael Jackson hits.
Kelly Guidry Open House
Parents and teachers who support the Common Core education standards sued Gov. Bobby Jindal Tuesday over his actions against the multi-state standards, accusing him of illegally meddling in education policy.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
An arrest was announced this morning in connection with last week’s bomb scare at UL Lafayette.
Attorneys, judges and others interviewed by LaPolitics expect 15 to 20 district judge races this year.
"I feel like I'm under siege," an attorney said recently over drinks at Galatoire's Bistro in Baton Rouge. "We all do. Every time I turn around somebody wants a check. District attorney races. The judges. They're killing us."
As a requirement for running for Congress in the 6th District, former Gov. Edwin Edwards has filed his financial disclosure statement with the U.S. House showing his income in 2013 totaling $242,787.
Unlike those swindled by Bernie Madoff, the victims of Texas businessman Robert Allen Stanford’s Ponzi scheme won’t be getting any relief from the Securities Investor Protection Corp.’s emergency fund after a recent appellate court ruling.
Acadiana's Top 50 Private Companies
It would be an understatement to say Schumacher Group had a challenging year in 2013.
Hampton Toyota has been serving Acadiana as the premier Toyota dealership for more than 10 years. And now, the glossy Johnston Street dealership is looking forward to a makeover.
Even when Floyd Degueyter is on “vacation” he’s hard at work.
As the second largest metal heat treating company in the country, Analytic Stress Relieving Inc. has grown by leaps and bounds since its inception in 1979.
When the Prohibition era came to an end in 1933, Joseph R. Streva saw an opportunity to make a little extra money to supplement his day job.
When a hurricane hits, Brent Mouton doesn’t run. The convenience store chain owner is proof that the challenges of mother nature can almost break a business, but Mouton learned to grow out of temporary closure from near devastation in 2002 and of lost potential revenue.