News on your favorite shows, specials & more!

Former Cape Town Opera Young Artist Wins Audience Prize at International Singing Competition in Latvia

Cape Town Opera’s first full length opera of their 25th year opens on Friday 14 June for a limited season at Artscape.

By: Jun. 12, 2024
Former Cape Town Opera Young Artist Wins Audience Prize at International Singing Competition in Latvia  Image
Enter Your Email to Unlock This Article

Plus, get the best of BroadwayWorld delivered to your inbox, and unlimited access to our editorial content across the globe.




Existing user? Just click login.

Baritone Thando Zwane, 32, a 2019 graduate of Cape Town Opera’s Judith Neilson Young Artists Programme (JNYAP), won the Audience Prize (€2 000) and an engagement with the Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden in Wiesbaden, Germany at the Finals of the prestigious 42nd International Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition that took place in Jurmala, Latvia on Sunday 9 June 2024. Two South Africans competed alongside Zwane, namely Lwazi Dlamini, who graduated in March 2024 from the Judith Neilson Young Artists Programme, and tenor Vuyisa Xipu from OperaUCT. Mezzo soprano Julia Portela Piñón who is currently based in Cape Town and in the JNYAP, competed for Spain. 

Speaking from Latvia where is on a celebratory high, Zwane, who hails from Eswatini (formerly Swaziland) said, "I feel so happy and honoured to have bowed out of the competition in such a memorable way. From my first performance here I felt a sense of belonging and the audience seemed to love me throughout all the rounds. Winning the Audience Prize and the Wiesbaden contract was indeed the cherry on top. I am looking forward to many more exciting engagements in the future!”

The week-long competition, seen as a springboard into a career in opera, is one of the largest competitions for young opera singers in the world, with entrants numbering close to 1,000. Qualifying rounds are held in more than 50 cities world-wide and singers continue to be judged by a jury consisting of artistic and casting directors from the world’s most prestigious opera houses including the Metropolitan Opera New York, Royal Opera House Covent Garden London, Opéra Bastille Paris (Studio), Teatro Real Madrid, Cape Town Opera, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Semperoper Dresden, to name a few. 

Cape Town Opera’s Judith Neilson Young Artists join a two year training and bursary programme dedicated to nurturing exceptionally talented postgraduate singers, pianists, and conductors, with a focus on preparing them for the demands of a professional career. It refines participants’ techniques, blending formal tuition with hands-on experience in rehearsal rooms and on stage alongside experienced performers ensuring invaluable, real-world experience within an opera company setting. Beyond skill enhancement, the programme offers personal mentorship and expert artistic guidance. It is the only comprehensive advanced training curriculum of its kind for young graduate singers in South Africa.

"The singing talent in Africa and South Africa is incredible and Cape Town Opera is honoured to have played a part in Thando's journey to international acclaim - we wish him all the very best in this next chapter of his burgeoning career,” said Alex Gabriel, Managing Director of Cape Town Opera.  

Cape Town Opera’s first full length opera of their 25th year opens on Friday 14 June for a limited season at Artscape with booking through Webtickets.



Comments

To post a comment, you must register and login.



Videos