Arts & Entertainment

African Children's Choir returning to the Tri-Cities

For 26 Ugandan children, life has gotten a whole lot better because they can sing.

The African Children's Choir, who range in age from 7 to 12, has toured the world for more than 20 years with a new batch of kids added to the ranks every few years.

The group makes a stop in the Tri-Cities at 7 p.m. Oct. 12 in the Art Fuller Auditorium at Kennewick High School.

The kids are chosen from some of the poorest families in their native Uganda in the eastern part of Africa. Many of them have lost one or both parents through war, famine and disease.

The choir is their chance to break free from the ravages of their country -- at least for a while.

They sing a variety of choreographed songs using drums and ethnic instruments native to their culture, but also sing many beloved children's songs and popular gospel tunes familiar to American audiences.

The choir has traveled worldwide in the past two decades and also has appeared on many TV and radio shows, such as Good Morning America, The Today Show, CBS This Morning and Focus.

They've also toured with well-known American songsters Michael W. Smith and Bill Gaither and joined Billy Graham in Amsterdam in 2000.

The choir visited the Tri-Cities for the first time last year when there was an impressive turnout to hear the young voices.

Admission is free, but donations are welcome and are used to keep the choir touring globally.

*Dori O'Neal: 582-1514;