Last night I was lucky to attend an Opera Gala at Cape Town’s Artscape Theatre celebrating life with South African Tenor Johan Botha and his friends:
- Goitsemang Lehobye – Soprano
- Bongiwe Nakani – Mezzo-soprano
- Mandla Mndebele – Baritone
Conductor Bernhard Gueller and the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra accompanied the four singers.
“Botha was born in Rustenburg, South Africa. He made his stage début in 1989 and an international breakthrough in 1993 at the Opéra Bastille, Paris as Pinkerton in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly. Since then, Botha has performed at leading opera venues around the world, including the Metropolitan Opera, Vienna State Opera, Opera Australia, Royal Opera House in London, La Scala in Milan, and the Salzburg Festival. He lives in Vienna with his wife and two sons.”
The program included an overture and intermezzo by the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra and arias from composers Verdi, Puccini, Leoncavallo, and others. There were duets and quartets, and the Artscape Opera House looked very elegant. I found Goitsemang Lehobye to be especially talented and enjoyed her duet from Otello with Bongiwe Nakani.
Sadly, I had to leave the performance early since I’ve been suffering from a very bad case of flu and knew coughing would not be appreciated. Hearing these talented singers perform in person was a wonderful experience and fond memory!
When I saw the headline title, I thought – why is she writing about Botha? Hahaha – got my people mixed up! (I had PW in mind). It looks as if it was a fabulous evening. Sad you had to leave early, but also most considerate. Hope you are feeling better soon.