The year-long Ghana@50 celebrations kicked off with an opprtunity to make a joyful noise unto the Lord as the Ghanaian Religious Choral Festival organised by the Salt and Light Ministries came off at the forecourt of the State House on January 13.

About 1,200 singers from church and society choirs sang melodious hymns, patriotic songs and choruses to the delight of all present.

Though a well-produced programme, patronage was low due to inadequate publicity. The spirit of the ocassion was, however, not lost as performance after performance was greeted with loud “halleluya “ responses from the audience and other choir members.

The next event of note was Gospelfest, which like the choral festival, was held in the ten regional capitals. A collaboration between the Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA) and the Ghana@50 Secretariat.

The four-hour show in Accra on January 28 enjoyed better publicity and patronage and featured over 20 solo artistes and groups.

They included Josh Laryea, Bernice Ofei, Suzzy and Matt, Tom Bright Davies, Jude Lomotey and Akosua Agyapong.
Coordination for Gospelfest went very well and MUSIGA President, Alhaji Sidiku Buari was delighted.

He told Graphic Showbiz:” We are pleased to have delivered such a series of concerts in all the 10 regions. MUSIGA representatives in all the regions have been able to collaborate so effectively with the Ghana@50 secretariat to deliver the programme.”

Hiplife musicians do not want to be left out of the celebrations. With sponsorship from the Ghana@50 Secretariat and Onetouch, they came on with the Love Life show at the forecourt of the State House.

It was another well-produced event and though patronage was not encouraging, some of the genre’s biggest names were there. They included Reggie Rokstone, Obrafour, 4×4, Praye, Obuor, Kwaw Kese, Wutah, Castro and Ebo.

Music gave way to drama when members of the Ghana Actors Guild enacted events leading to the attainment of independence in Accra.

David Dontoh enjoys playing Kwame Nkrumah and he was in his element as he delivered the independence day address surrounded by other known actors.

The whole push for independence and the heady days just before it arrived are landmark moments in our history and the enactment should have been better organised and publicised.

It seemed at some point as if only the Convention Peoples Party (CPP) followers were enthusiastic about the production.

Many young people have read about the events in books and it would be worthwhile restaging the enactment, at least for the benefit of school children.

Kentefest, the seven-day exposition in Accra on the treasured hand-woven cloth highlighted the economic gains the country can make from steamlining the kente industry.

The last-minute change of venue from the Nkrumah Memorial Park to the forecourt of the State House somehow affected attendance in the first few days of Kentefest but things picked up later.

The Miss Ghana@50 beauty pageant is also on with considerable support from the Ghana@50 Secretariat. The ten finalists for tomorrow’s showdown at the Banquet Hall of the State House have been in camp for a while now.

There’s been ample publicity for the event and a good turn-out is expected.

More events have been lined up to celebrate the 50th independence anniversary and we hope the necessary buzz will be generated for as many people as possible to partake.