November 03, 2023

South Africa: Operalia Finals Approach

The Operalia – which has been dubbed “The World Cup of Opera” – is about to enter its final round of the competition, with two South Africans in the running for the title.

The 30th edition of the opera competition began on Monday, 30 October, at the Artscape Theatre in Cape Town, Western Cape. This year is the first time the tournament has been held on African soil, joining other cultural capitals like London, Paris, Madrid, Hamburg, Tokyo and Milan who have previously played host.

Two South Africans will compete on the final evening: soprano singer Nombulelo Yende who is a finalist in the Opera category, and mezzo-soprano singer Siphokazi Molteno who is a finalist in the Zarzuela category.

For Yende it’s more than just a career, as she’s truly passionate about the art. “Singing opera is so liberating to me. I love playing different characters, invoking so many emotions,” Yende told a local publication today, 3 November.

Judging standards for the Operalia have been strict, with over 800 original entrants of which only 34 different artists from 15 countries were officially selected to compete. The final round, which will take place on Sunday, 5 November, will see 12 singers go head-to-head for the prize money of more than $200 000.

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