The newly formed Township Opera Company is preparing for its first official concert, to be held next Thursday in Mowbray.
The company has 20 members who come from Khayelitsha, Gugulethu, Nyanga and Langa, and most have studied at the UCT Opera School.
They have been rehearsing three days a week for the past six months at Mowbray Church Hall.
“At the moment we are starting small, we have no funding. We come to train every day. We are getting nothing out of it. We believe that when the right time comes, something will come, because we believe in our talent and the art form itself,” said music director Sandile Kamle, who helped to found the company earlier this year with Lungile Jacobs.
The group had its launch in Century City in September. The function included performances of works by Verdi, Mozart, Bizet and Puccini, plus a few African favourites blended with poetry and fashion.
The group gave a 30-minute lunchtime promotional performance at Old Mutual last Friday to promote its upcoming concert in Mowbray.
“We are trying to be different, we trying to take this art form to your normal person. We can tailor any type of performance,” Mr Kamle said.
Linda Nteleza, from Khayelitsha, has toured Europe with Cape Town Opera and done post-graduate opera studies in New York. She said she was inspired to be part of something new.
“Most people know that opera is European, we grew up having that mentality, so now we have the Township Opera company, it’s something that we as black young singers can own,” she said.
Mr Kamle said that they would like to do a concert in Nyanga, Gugulethu and Khayelitsha before the end of the year.
The Township Opera Company will have its first official concert at the Mowbray Baptist Church Hall, on Thursday October 18, at 7pm. Email Lungile Jacobs at email@example.com for details.