For over two decades, Joyous Celebration has consistently been at the top of the minds of their core audiences.
For those who weren’t able to come out to watch them locally or internationally, the mega choir would put out DVDs almost religiously. This week, they’re taking that to the big screen.
It’s difficult to review a DVD that is just put in a cinema. Full disclosure: I thought I was headed to a preview of a film about the iconic institution that is Joyous Celebration. I knew there would be a whole lot of praise and worship in between, but I also expected a story.
However, the narrative of this Joyous Celebration film, called All For You, is limited to dressing thematically for certain songs. As far as their previous work goes, this is probably Joyous at its height, musically. The group does not miss a note.
There is a whole lot of dancing. They have become known for incorporating street choreography into their sets so it’s no surprise to see a gwarra gwarra here and there. This is why I would be keen to be a fly on the wall during these screenings to see if members of the public are going to be able to sit still in their seats like they would if they were having any other experience at the cinema.
Experience Joyous Celebration 22 on the BIG screen from April 27th at selected Nu Metro cinemas. Online bookings now open, purchase tickets here https://t.co/PNi7KrD4wX @numetro pic.twitter.com/i51cRpG39i— #ExtremeCinemaExperience (@joyous22film) April 21, 2018
This film is only being screened at Nu Metro cinemas around the country. In addition to giving their fans a chance to watch this first feat of Joyous Celebration, tickets to this particular experience are just R50.
In terms of what to expect, it’s the standard song-after-song routine with some impressive solos for the band.
There’s a curious mixture of James Brown and Kirk Franklin towards the beginning of the DVD, but maybe this is another way Joyous is bridging the gap between people who like traditional gospel and those who want to go the Big Willy way and get jiggy.
The Joyous team is excited about this endeavour and Pastor Jabu Hlongwane has said: “This is going to be the first time that our fans will witness us from all angles in crisp, clear, high-definition video.
“Our fans will be transported onto stage - being part of the production and live event. Although the Joyous 22 DVD already captures the best of MTN Joyous Celebrations’ performance, the concert film is set to surpass expectations by far as the audience is exposed to rare dimensions of our stage act.”