Tsoha, Moroki!

(Wake Up, Poet!)

Date:

Unknown

Scoring:

SATB

Catalogue No:

JPM030

Mohapeloa first published Tsoha, Moroki! as song No. 30 in his first collection of 32 songs, Meloli le Lithallere tsa Afrika in 1935. It is in the style of a march, written for the Paris Evangelical Missionary Society’s centenary in Lesotho in 1933. Mohapeloa changed the text in 1965 when he sent some of his songs and texts to the SABC, slightly downplaying the role of the missionaries by leaving out the phrase “Baruti ba bararo” (‘the three priests’). Despite minor textual changes the song is still a stirring tribute to the way the PEMS missionaries helped the country emerge out of what Mohapeloa calls the ‘darkness and strife’ of the 19th century to become an independent kingdom and modern sovereign state with a strong focus on education and print media. Among other things, the PEMS helped the Basuto hold out against incorporation into the Union of South Africa in 1910 (see J.M. Mohapeloa 2002, 337-347).

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