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OPERA FOR FOM (article first published : 2002-11-9)

The new University of Natal Durbanís Opera School and Vocal Academy will present a concert for Friends of Music on November 12. This event forms a sequel to the organisationís Opera Gala which took place in the Playhouse Opera on October 30. As such, it presents operatic music of a more intimate kind, and for smaller forces, the emphasis being on soloists and small ensembles.

The programme is titled An Opera Garland and the fee will be donated to one of the Schoolís most gifted singers, Joyce Moholoagae, who has been offered a scholarship to enter the post-graduate opera diploma at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Joyce needs funding in order to spend some preliminary months in London, working under an Academy teacher, to ready herself for this advanced training.

She therefore features in the programme, singing L'amero from Mozart's Il re pastore and Merce, diletti from The Sicilian Vespers.

In addition, the programme includes the following soloists Ė Ntokozo Xaba (Caro nome from Rigoletto), Zanele Gumede (Cruda sorte by Rossini), Bheki Mkhize (Handel's Ombra mai fu and Boito's Dai campi), Sarah-Jane Brandon (Solveig's Song), William Silk, Sibusiso Mkhize, Bonginkosi Cingane and Selby Hlangu.

The eveningís programme is completed with small ensembles such as trios (Soave sia il vento from Cosi Fan Tutte) and a quartet from Don Giovanni. The opera ensemble comes together for two choruses.

This will be the last concert in 2002 by the members of the University's opera ensemble. It is, therefore, a farewell occasion to those members who are due to graduate and take up employment next year. The Music Programme is busy auditioning at present, seeking the voices that will enter in their place.

The programme will be directed by David Smith, who heads the department, while Colleen Phil is the voice coach. The Opera Ensemble will be conducted by Walter Butt with accompanists Bobby Mills and Andrew Warburton.

The concert takes place at the Durban Jewish Club on November 12 at 19h45. Book at Computicket.




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