Nkosi sikelel’ iAfrika
Maluphakanyisw’ uphondo lwayo,
Yizwa imithandazo, Yethu,
Nkosi sikelela, Thina, Lusapho lwayo.
Morena boloka setjhaba sa heso,
O fedise dintwa la matshwenyeho.
O se boloke, O se boloke, Setjhaba sa Heso,
Setjhaba sa South Afrika
– South Afrika
Uit die blou van onse hemel,
Uit die diepte van ons see,
Oor ons ewige gebergtes,
Waar die kranse antwoord gee,
Sounds to call to come together,
And united we shall stand,
Let us live and strive for freedom,
In South Africa our land…
Right, now that you know the words, it’s time to sing!
Some of South Africa’s top performing artists have done it, now it’s your turn. Creatives James Bassingthwaighte and Darren Hayward are working on a project to get 1000 South Africans to sing the national anthem together… while on lockdown. Here’s how it works:
“It’s not really a challenge,” says Carel, “but more a way of co-creating something beautiful to inspire us all.
“If I had to pick one thing about SA that I love it would be our diversity – in so many aspects. It doesn’t matter how good or bad you think you sing, just get a fellow lockdowner to use their phone to record you singing along to the words below. Follow, sing, record and send. Easy.”
No need to be a natural born singer
“You may know that I have entered and finished three Comrades,” Carel continues. “And all of you will know I am not natural born runner. Many of you will know that EasyEquities has proven that DIY investing is possible – and we’re not all natual born investors. All of us are smarter than we think and hundreds of thousands of South Africans are investing for themselves.
“My point – you CAN sing, even if you’re not a natural born singer. Have fun and submit as a proud South African.”
There have already been hundreds of submissions. So no matter how poorly you (think you) sing, click on this and have a fellow lockdowner record you. Be part of something magical. Co-create as we beat Covid-19.
Did you know these 10 national anthem facts?
- Nkosi Sikilel’ iAfrika was written by Enoch Sontonga as a hymn in 1897
- It was adopted as the official anthem of the ANC (and accordingly banned) during the apartheid era
- The song spread northwards and was soon adopted as a pan-African liberation song
- A number of African countries have used the hymn as their national anthems at one stage or another, including Zambia, Tanzania, Namibia and Zimbabwe
- The song’s melody is currently used in the national anthems of Tanzania and Zambia
- A sample from the anthem is used in the 1987 anti-apartheid protest song Weeping, by Bright Blue
- South Africa’s national anthem is sung in five languages: Xhosa, Zulu, Sotho, English and Afrikaans
- Other multi-lingual anthems include New Zealand’s, which is sung in English and Maori, and Switzerland’s. There are actually four versions of the Swiss national anthem, one in each of the country’s official languages: French, German, Italian and Romansch
- Greece has the longest national anthem in the world. It has 158 stanzas, written by the poet Dionysios Solomos (although the cut-down version is shorter than Uruguay’s, which is more than five minutes long)
- Colombia, Senegal, Belgium and Ecuador have anthems written by their prime ministers or presidents