From what we saw in the last episode of Clash of the Choirs, there is going to be some serious competition in this new season.
The episode was themed in a way that only allowed the female choirmasters – Kelly Khumalo, Bucie and Busiswa – to have a go at the songs that were assigned to them. The twist that many viewers did not see coming was that the songs that were performed were all hits from the choirmasters. This element was heightened by the owners of the songs sitting on the judging panel and listening to the tunes they were familiar with and their new interpretation.
Busiswa’s choir from KZN got the ball rolling after being asked to do gospel musician Sfiso Ncwane’s Kulungile Baba. The song is a huge hit in the gospel world and has won numerous accolades, making it an instant classic. The choir showed their talent by delivering incredible harmonies in the beginning of the song before breaking into a more complex and uptempo beat. It turned out to be a decent delivery which Ncwane liked so much, he said he might just use it when he next performed the song. So essentially it was a good start.
Then there was Bucie, who is in charge of the Eastern Cape team. They were given JR’s So Hot and were dressed for the part in colourful clothes and had some slick moves. Yet, there was something that just did not gel with their showcase. JR tried to be polite in his assessment, but could not hide the fact that he wasn’t crazy about it. Anele Mdoda, being the most vocal of the judges, said she thought it did not go well. She went on to say that the problem might have had to do with the fact that Bucie did not connect with her choir because she was wearing shades. Yet, in her defence, this was a rap song and if you are to go with the hip hop culture, dark glasses are a huge part of it.
As if saving the best for last, the final performance was from the Gauteng choir which is led by Kelly Khumalo. They did Busiswa’s Ngoku and it was an amazing interpretation that had Busiswa confess that she felt as if she was a legend sitting at her tribute show. Khumalo used the energy that Busiswa exudes in her performances and raise the bar with an infectious rendition.
There is no doubt that this week belongs to Khumalo. And even though Busiswa is competing with her, she has to agree that the way her song was interpreted by the competition killed her chances to come out tops.
Next Sunday, the men – JR, iFani, Sfiso Ncwane and Papa Penny – compete to promote their choirs.
Clash of the Choirs airs every Sunday at 5.30pm on Mzansi Magic (DStv channel 161).