In three days time, a group of local musicians are set to perform a medley of their hits at President Obama's inaugural ball in Washington, USA.

At a send-off held for Lira, Mi Casa and Hugh Masekela the stars revealed what songs they were set to perform and how they felt about being handpicked to represent South Africa at the prestigious do.

Lira explained that she was especially excited because she looked up to Obama and saw him as having opened doors for all Africans.

"To me, Obama represents possibility on a global stage. When he took office he empowered every African. There are great possibilities happening, it's good to know that the world will know who I am, as a young, black South African woman. It's an honour to be able to tell our unique story to the world. We're moving at a great pace as South Africans," she said.

In addition, Lira stated that she was inspired by Barack and Michelle Obama's relationship. "They have built a beautiful picture of what family is. For this I am thankful," she said.

According to Lira, she will perform two covers at the ball, Something Inside So Strong and Miriam Makeba's Pata Pata. Lira is also set to sing one of her own songs, Ngiyazifela, which she is intent on dedicating to the president and his wife.

"I sang the song for Mandela and I think it will be equally fitting to sing the song to Obama given his recent triumph. I will also be paying homage to Miriam Makeba who is one of my idols by performing Pata Pata."

On what she will wear, Lira said David Tlale had designed a statement piece for her. "The theme is African royalty and the point is for me to be remembered."

Mi Casa will perform their hits These Streets and La Vida. J'Something, the group's lead vocalist, said they would perform a five-minute tribute set dedicated to South African legends. Mi Casa also expressed their excitement about sharing the stage with international acts at the ball.

"We are extremely proud. It's amazing that the nation are backing us and supporting us. We've only been here for a year and a half and we hope that one day we'll be able to share our experiences like Hugh Masekela and Lira."

Grammy-nominated Masekela is scheduled to perform at an event hosted by the Commission of African American Churches after the inauguration.

"I've been requested to play a tribute to Mandela. I will perfrom his favourite song, Stimela," said Masekela. About his performance, Masekela added that he was honoured to perform and looked forward to the Grammy awards.

Paul Mashatile, Minister of Arts and Culture, said their performances would unlock many opportunities for musicians. He concluded that his department would embark on several projects to give exposure to local artists this year.