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First Vox Pasifiki festival an inspiring success

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30 June 2011 Tonga's first ever festival celebrating Pacific choral music was held last night in Nuku'alofa's Centenary Church. Ten choirs from churches across Tonga performed for Guest of Honour HM Queen Halaevalu Mata'aho and a rapt audience.

Superb vocal skills combined with gifted musicians and masterful conducting captivated the spellbound listeners who rewarded performances with powerful applause. The evening culminated in the union of all choirs singing the Hallelujah Chorus from Handel's Messiah in a spine-tingling finale.

Rev. Dr. ‘Ahio, President of the Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga, generously received the choirs and audience to his church with an invocation. The Minister of Tourism, Hon. ‘Isileli Pulu was also in attendance and welcomed the event with a formal introductory speech. Between performances, the evening's MC, Mr Mateaki Heimuli, presented each choir and hosted the event. A thank you note was given by Mr Viliami ‘Esei Tu'ipulotu, representative from the Vox Pasifiki committee.

For many years Tonga has been known as a centre for spiritual and choral music. Vox Pasifiki was initiated by the Ministry of Tourism and the National Events Committee as a way to showcase the talent not only in Tonga but across the region. This year's event spectacularly displayed the diversity and quality of local groups and provides the foundation for a major regional music festival to be developed over the coming twelve months. Next year will focus on extending participation with choirs from across the Pacific invited to perform in a unique blend of traditional Polynesian music, Western church music and modern choral music.

An important event such as Vox Pasifiki has immense potential to contribute to the local economy through tourism and generate interest in Tonga by sharing a special part our culture and heritage with friends from across the world. Next year's Vox will take place over three days and across multiple venues around Nuku'alofa.

ENDS

Issued by the: Ministry of Tourism, Nuku'alofa, 2011.
Last Updated ( Monday, 18 July 2011 14:41 )  

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