The Ubuntu Tour is coming to Twin Towns this weekend and in anticipation of the show, we spoke with Ugandan Choir member, Peter Sentongo.
A little background-
The African Children’s Choir is an organization bringing food, education, and shelter to under privileged children in Africa by including them in the Choir which tours the world raising money for their needs.
Once the children of The African Children’s Choir have graduated and gone to University they can then members of the Ubuntu Tour. Ubuntu is a South African word meaning human kindness. The Ubuntu tour will run for 3 months in hopes of raising enough funds to sponsor the Ubuntu Choir member's University tuition.
With sponsorship, each member will go to a University best suited for his or her particular area of interest, but while on tour, they will be participating in job shadowing here in Australia.
How did you get involved in the African Children’s Choir ?
When I was eight years old in 2004, The African Children’s Choir coordinators came to the church in my area and had us audition. During the audition we had to sing and dance. I was selected out of the many to join Choir 25 (each choir group is assigned a number). We went abroad to America, Canada, the UK, Belgium and many other places. We traveled for 19 months before we returned home where I went to primary school. I have also now gone to secondary school and am currently in University studying construction management.
What made you want to audition? Was it with the support of your family?
When I was young I wasn’t going to school. Going to school was a very hard thing. The Choir was going to provide education, food and necessities. It was going to be life changing. I didn’t have those necessities so it was my family’s decision for me to audition.
It was a very joyous day the day I was accepted into the Choir!
What do you like most about belonging to the Choir?
What I like most is the opportunity to meet new people and see new sights. Australia has been a great place. It’s very beautiful.
A lot of the children from the Choir go on to be very successful members of society. Do you have any future plans after you are finished with the Choir?
I plan to be a project manager for a construction company back home. I want to coordinate with the engineers and workers to build better roads for Uganda.
What have you learned from traveling the world?
I’ve learned to be open to new ideas. We meet a lot of people with different perspectives on life. It has been very interesting and eye-opening.
What is your favourite thing about traveling the world?
My favourite thing about traveling the world is getting to job shadow. In Sydney, I was job shadowing with a construction company that does interior design and in the Blue Mountains I was with a construction company dealing with steel metal. The company in the Blue Mountains does all kinds of things from road works to building apartments and they use a lot of machines to get the work done. It has been a great experience to see the machines. Back at home most of our labour is manual. It has been enlightening to see what can be accomplished with the machines. I am really excited about going home and sharing my newfound knowledge.
Which University do you attend?
I study at Makerere University. It’s in Kampala, Uganda. It’s one of the largest Universities in East Africa.
I will be finishing my degree in two years time and I hope to help build another secondary school in my town, as well as help with the roads.
When you are not on tour, where do you reside?
Back at home (Uganda) at a place called Entebbe.
Where was your favourite place you have performed?
I think it would be the Sunshine Coast. It was great there. The people at the shows really loved it. (Can’t beat South East Queensland!)
Have you been to the Gold Coast before?
No, this will be my first time.
Will you have any free time to do some exploring? If so, what are you most looking forward to?
Oh yes, we will head to the beach and the theme parks! We are looking forward to it!
What is your favorite thing about performing?
My favourite thing is the drumming and the dancing. It’s really energetic and fun!
What can someone coming to the show expect?
They can expect energetic dancing, big smiles and harmonious singing. It’s really a good show!
What would you like to share with our readers?
Come to the show and get ready to be blown away! It’s a great, great experience. You wont be the same after the show!
By Marleigh Kelly