Voices to feature 30 volunteers to raise funds for Australian Jewish organisations

November 6, 2017 by Geoff Sirmai
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The spectacular cross-cultural musical event “Voices” touring Australia this month will be a labour of love for the huge team making the journey from South Africa to Perth, Melbourne and Sydney.

Oshy Tugenhadf and the cast of Voices’ volunteers

The massive-scale music production in which neither organisers nor star performers are being paid is heading this way to spread joy and uplift the local community and to raise funds for worthy local causes. These include Sydney’s Friendship Circle, which supports families of children with special needs as well as Keren Hayesod UIA, Friends of the Hebrew University and Caulfield Synagogue (Melbourne).

The show is a wonderful mixture of music for every taste: Jewish classics such as “Adon Olam”, “L’cha Dodi”, “Nigun shel Moshe”; African folk like “Thula Baba”; Italian opera and Lloyd Webber show-stoppers and even contemporary Leonard Cohen, Justin Timberlake, Queen and Beyonce covers.

The show is also replete with emotional special tributes.

Among these are songs for iconic South African musician, anthropologist and anti-apartheid activist Johnny Clegg – widely known as the white Zulu’ – who is gravely ill and currently performing farewell concerts in the US. And there will also be tributes to the late much-loved South African singer, Roy Joffe, who often sang with Voices star Oshy Tugendhaft and – after emigrating to Australia – sang at Sydney’s Kehillat Masada synagogue in St Ives, but tragically passed away last year.

“Roy had a passion for music at a very young age,” says Oshy. “He performed regularly in musical theatre and opera. Roy was a fine classical pianist and played with the Youth National Symphony Orchestra of South Africa.

“Roy’s love of Jewish music was born when he would sing duets with his late dad in synagogue. He sang for many congregations during his youth, and later formally studied music chazzanut and nusach (cantorial and liturgical music).”

Roy travelled the world singing with the Johannesburg Jewish Male Choir (JJMC) where he studied conducting and musical interpretation and later was appointed assistant conductor of the JJMC.

He conducted various choirs and held multiple “To Life!” fund-raising concerts to raise money for special needs in South African Jewish community.

“Roy was a giving, considerate person, always happy to take a back seat, never looking for the limelight,” Oshy adds. “A man of tremendous principles, always there to help others. Roy (and his sweet beautiful voice) will always be remembered with love!”

VOICES – Africa to Israel and Beyond

Featuring Oshy Tugendhaft & Black Yoghurt
Perth Tues 14 November 7.30pm – Churchlands Auditorium
Melbourne Thur 16 November 7.30pm – Caulfield Shule
Sydney Sun 19 November 6.30pm & Mon 20 November 7.30pm – Moriah College, Queens Park

Tickets: from $35 to $125. Bookings & info www.voicesoshyaustralia.com.au  

Call 02 9361 4273 (BH) or 03 9525 9492 (Melbourne)

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