MUSON, Mandilas Thrill Audience With Spectacular Christmas Concert

Fadekemi Ajakaiye

The Musical Society of Nigeria (MUSON) illuminated the hearts of music enthusiasts during the much-anticipated MUSON and MANDILAS Christmas Concert,

at 6:00 PM on Sunday, December 3rd, 2023 at the prestigious Shell Zenith Bank Hall, Muson Centre, Onikan Lagos to resonate the spirit of the festive season. 

Under the baton of the esteemed conductor Sir Emeka Nwokedi, the MUSON Choir & Orchestra took center stage, captivating the audience with a mesmerizing performance. The program showcased a diverse repertoire that included stirring compositions by Joseph Martin, Lloyd Larson, John Rutter, Aderemi Olajide, and perennial favorite among evergreen Christmas carols, Sam Ojukwu.

The event started welcoming music aficionados and patrons alike to a spellbinding evening of symphonic harmony and vocal prowess. The collective talents of the musicians, Oge Nweke, Stephen Nwosu, David Ihechukwu, Christian Onyeji, and the rest were all united in their dedication to musical excellence, painted an enchanting musical canvas that transcended boundaries and enthralled the audience.

The fusion of orchestral finesse and choral grandeur, coupled with the seasonal spirit, amplified the ambiance, leaving an indelible mark on the hearts of attendees. The Shell Zenith Bank Hall reverberated with the spirit of unity and joy, mirroring the enchantment shared by both performers and the spellbound audience.

Reflecting on the event, one attendee Mrs Stephanie Waniko of the Nigerian Institute of Oceanography and Marine Research (NIOMR) enthused, “this concert is relaxing. It brings the spirit of Christmas to life. The year has been very challenging and for me coming to this concert is a way of reassurance that next year will be better. It is a season of rejoicing. I love carols and Christmas is my best time of the year.”

The MUSON/MANDILAS Christmas Concerts, an annual testament to the Musical Society of Nigeria’s commitment to excellence, not only delighted the audience but also reinforced the organization’s status as a beacon of musical brilliance in Nigeria. 

Chairman, Board of Trustees, Musical Society of Nigeria(MUSON), Mr. Louis Mbanefo (SAN) said, “the Christmas Concert has been an annual event since MOUSON was founded 40 years ago, every christmas, we have had our Christmas Concerts and this is one of the major events of the year. And in the last few years, the Mandilas Group offered to sponsor these concerts and the part of this excitement is that a part of the Mandilas Group has a choir which takes part in the concerts also, so that is how this has developed.”

With the thrills of the Christmas concert, the chairman commented on the benefits of the event, he said “the attendees will take away the love of serious music and the inspiration to get their children to learn musical instruments and a greater understanding and enjoyment of music.”

Consequently, as the melodies of the season linger in the air, the echoes of this unforgettable musical journey will resonate, serving as a heartwarming prelude to the forthcoming festive celebrations.

The Musical Society of Nigeria’s tireless dedication to the arts continues to elevate cultural experiences, nurturing a vibrant musical landscape and kindling the spirit of unity and celebration within the community.

Sir, Emeka Nwokedi, Director of the MUOSON Choir, commented on the thrilled Christmas concert. He said “from the reactions of people, I know that they enjoyed it tremendously. People looked forward to coming, as a matter of fact, we had to send some people back because the hall, people who did not get tickets before, that will show you how popular this Concert, especially of our Christmas Concerts are.” 

He also shared the comments of some satisfied guests at the Christmas concert, he said “people who told me they enjoyed it so much, especially some of our carols, Nigerian carols. You know we did the Western carols and the Nigerian carols, African carols and people enjoyed it because we took this side and took that side and they so much enjoyed it.”

Muson is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) which needs support to operate. 

The Muson Choir Director commented on the Christmas Concert partnership between Muson and Mandilas.

He said, “it is a collaboration. Usually we do Christmas Concerts every year but in the past four years, Mandilas came in to support because Muson is like a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), we only get support from companies and establishments to support us, so in the past three years, Mandilas came in and they have been supporting us. They also have their choir which we are also grooming. So, it is a collaboration between us and Mandilas, they are doing the financing.”

The Christmas Concert had several parts where the Muson Choir had part 1 from the foreign composers, the Mandilas Choir had part 2 from African composers, the Mandilas Choir was conducted by David Ihechukwu. 

Nevertheless, the Muson Choir took some African and West African composers in the later parts of the concert.

Sir Emeka Nwokedi explained further on the selected Christmas Concert carol compositions, he said

“The carols are a selection of works from well known world composers. The composers have done a lot of Christmas compositions, so we made selections from the works they have composed and in addition, we also have some Nigerian composers. The inspiration behind the selection of works from the composers is that these composers have works that are elevating.”

Mandilas, Sales and Marketing General Manager, Mrs. Marie Therese Phido shared the significance of the Muson/Mandilas Christmas Concert. She said, “this is a season of love, giving back to your community, showing it has been a good year and we are here to refresh and relax.”

Mrs. Marie Therese Phido further gave reasons for Mandilas support for Muson Christmas Concert.

She said,”Our Founder was a founding member of MUSON, so this collaboration is just a continuation of what he started many years ago. The values of MUSON resonate with the values of MANDILAS and this is us continuing that tradition of excellence in music and excellence in Nigeria.”

The Muson and Mandilas Christmas Concert aimed to make people especially members of Musical Society of Nigeria (MUSON) to relax and enjoy special Christmas Carol compositions in the holidays season after a long year run.

Related Articles