From Uganda:  An Hour of Gayaza Praise!

Gayaza Girls School is situated around 12 miles north east of the Uganda’s capital, Kampala. It is the country’s oldest all-girls boarding secondary school,   founded in 1905 by the Church Mission Society, and has  a long tradition of excellent teaching – including both European and traditional Ugandan music.  Its musical performances have long been admired. In 1983  the choir with its conductor Janice Hobday,  visited the UK to give  performances. Hence this recording.

I’m grateful to Janice,  one of Gayaza’s former music teachers, for the use of these recordings originally produced on cassette for the Church Mission Society. They are still much sought after by Gayaza alumni, many of whom are now living and working in the UK. Janice, who has an excellent soprano voice, sang as a soloist in several concerts which I conducted during the 1960s. She continued to teach there all through the troubled years of Idi Amin’s chaotic rule. Now retired she lives in Smethwick, West Midlands.

In their Hour of Praise they sang 27 items.  Apart from Kodaly’s composition and a few traditional hymns the vast majority were composed by Gayaza girls themselves

Enjoy them!


 1      Hallelujah! Jesus is alive today.


2. Mony ocoro.  The army of the Lord has come. (Acoli)

‘Acholi dancers’

   3.  Down, down in the city.

4.  Psalm 23 (in Runyankore).  

5. Psalm 150.  (setting by Kodaly)

The birth of Jesus.  

   6. Peace be with you. (St. Luke – Ch.1)

7. “O Glory! Hallelujah” (Magnificat)

8. The Glory of the Lord (Isaiah 60)

9. Simeon’s Song (Nunc dimitt is) 

Kiganda baakisimba dance

The Ministry of Jesus

 10. Yezu alokola


11. Hosannah


Jesus and his resurrection.

   12. Why did you choose to die?


   13 Atwemda (Soga)


14 Mazima Yezu ni murungi (Truly Jesus is good).


15. Nze mbanymiza uwima Yezu.


   16.  He is risen

Ascension and Pentecost


Praise drumming



17. Glory and honour to you, King of Kings.


18 In tongues of living flame.


19. Moto (the fire of the spirit is burning)


20. Bulijjo tutendereza  (the Uganda Martyrs)


21 What can separate us from the love of Christ?


22. Do not be afraid. 

Our life in Christ

23. New life in Jesus


24. Holy, Holy, Holy.


25. Ama zi ama (Lugbara)


26. Lubanga ne tye.  God is there in my heart.


27. We praise your name.

7 thoughts on “From Uganda:  An Hour of Gayaza Praise!

  1. This brings tears to my eyes! Thank you for sharing. I really had the time of my life, 1985 to 1990! We danced, Sang and made our Friends, I have kept to today.

  2. Wow, this is so beautiful…. Great wonderful memories of Gayaza. We bless the Lord for the values instilled in us through Miss Hobday’s music. Mrs.Geria’s commitment to teach us to sing for the Lord is always treasured at at heart.

  3. This is beautiful. Reminded me of the beautiful days at Gayaza. Is it possible to make CDs out of this music which can be sold on Amazon and in hard copy at Gayaza?

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