GALA CONCERT

Saturday 26 May 19:00

Moravian Church Genadendal

R150 - tickets available at Computicket or at Tourism Info Greyton

The premier concert of the Classics for All festival features the talents of soprano Cecilia Rangwanasha, tenor Selim Kagee and the Cantique Choir, accompanied by pianist Philippus Hugo and a 5-piece band consisting of Visser Liebenberg (clarinet), Maja van Dyk (viola), Myles Roberts (flute), David Bester (violin) and Eddie McLean (cello).  BIOGRAPHIES BELOW

SPONSORED BY THE RUPERT FOUNDATION

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BIOGRAPHIES

SELIM KAGEE

Selim Kagee, South Africa’s premier classical crossover artist, described as part Bocelli, a smidgen of Groban, with a slice of Pavarotti and a bead of Bublé - he is fast putting his inimitable signature on a sound the world continues to love and support.

Selim has made his debut into the world of classical pop music after being signed to the international label EMI in 2012. He has subsequently released his debut album ‘Cry For Love’ (Piango D’Amore).

His stellar 12-track album of contemporary classical pop music has been a work and dream that has evolved over the past 20 years for the Cape Town born and-raised musician.

"I’ve always had a great desire to perform and express myself creatively” Kagee admits. Supplementing his artistic streak, Kagee dabbled in sculpture, drawing and graphic design – the latter becoming his formal profession. Backtracking 15 years, Kagee’s burning desire to perform led him to a youth drama group. “I was the oldest student there,” he recalls with a smile. “I was 19, and all the other students were school going age, but I didn’t let that distract me. Six weeks later we performed a skit to a small room of 20 or 30 parents. From that moment the performance bug bit hard.”

A gap year in the UK followed, and while staying with an uncle, Kagee made quick work of immersing himself in every style of music he could. “I bought a few singing training CD’s and with serious determination I decided that I wanted to learn to sing,” he recalls. “I sang for five hours every day, and became obsessed with wanting to sing.”

It wasn’t until his return to South Africa in 2001 that Kagee found a vocal coach in the late Jean Stuart (a retired opera singer) who, in his words, “taught me to sing. She took me under her wing and trained me from scratch for over a decade, giving me countless hours of vocal training at the piano. Her dedication to my growth and her belief in me was priceless.  I realised that besides a bit of inherent talent, singing is a technique that could be learnt if one has a strong desire. I continue to grow and learn as a singer and musician, but if wasn’t for Jean I don’t think I would have found my true voice.”

His album, Cry For Love (Piango D’Amore) is dedicated to her legacy.

By 2002 Kagee began auditioning, and was soon accepted for lead roles in theatre productions such as The Sound Of Music, The BoyfriendAnnie Get Your Gun and many more. “It was a great learning ground to perform onstage with an orchestra,” he recollects. “With all the exposure to live performance and singing I knew that I had the aptitude, but I wanted and needed to carve out my own voice.”

In 2009 Kagee signed up for a song-writing course and began taking guitar lessons with respected songwriter and producer Clive Ridgway, who recognised the marketability of his voice, and before long the two embarked on a journey of recording a few demos that culminated in EMI Music signing Kagee to the international label as a classical pop artist.

His album consists of an eclectic mix of original compositions and interesting interpretations of popular gems, peppered with pop, classical and cinematic influences – all giving Kagee’s voice the opportunity to showcase its warmth and sincerity.

They include songs co-written with Ridgway and recorded with the Cape Town POPS orchestra.

"It´s not very often that a new artist gets to record with an orchestra, but we all realised that this was the right way to capture the music authentically." says Kagee.

Classic Feel magazine described him as “an impressive new, proudly South African addition to the adult contemporary and crossover fields of which these four greats (Bocelli, Groban, Pavarotti and Buble) are among the most well-known exemplars”. Die Burger Newspaper agreed, calling him “Cape Town’s own Bocelli”. Audio Video Magazine said, “His voice is fluid, rich, well trained and easily able to perform the lovely romantic, ballad style he has chosen.”

Selim’s live show boasts an impressive 28-piece orchestra with dazzling virtuoso musicians that provide a high quality of musicianship combined with outstanding showmanship. Songs include O Sole MioIl MondoParla Piu Piano (The Godfather theme song), Charlie Chaplin’s Smile, and his anthem-like original English / Italian title-track Cry For Love, all cleverly woven through interesting and humourous anecdotes of his life.

Highlights of his career thus far include recording a duet with Irish supergroup Celtic Woman on their 2012 Christmas Album, singing the South African anthem in Australia and performing live at the Sergo Franchi Memorial Concert, an open air event held in Connecticut, USA in August 2014.

Enchanting at every turn, Selim Kagee’s fans can rest assured he’s locking down for the long haul with nothing less than the very best his God-given voice can muster.

CECILIA RANGWANASHA

Masabane Cecilia Rangwanasha (23) is a soprano and Postgraduate diploma student at University of Cape Town under Vocal Tuition of Prof. Virginia Davids. Cecilia completed her BTech in vocal Art (Performance) at the Tshwane University of Technology under the vocal tuition of Mr Kiewiet Pali. She started singing at a very early age and represented Limpopo province on National level at the FET Band SASCE school competitions from 2009-2012. Cecilia is regularly involved in community projects singing as soloist at the National Choir Festival.

She has also performed as chorus member in the TUT student productions of Faust (2013), La Cenerentola (2014) and Falstaff (2015). In 2015 she participated in concerts and master classes with the internationally acclaimed Professor Michelle Breedt, Professor Kliesie Kelly Moog, Professor Barbara Hill Moore and Professor Josef Protschka from America and Germany, respectively. She was chosen as one of six singers to take part in the Johannesburg International Mozart Festival (2015, 2016, 2017) and was selected as semi- finalist in the Mimi Coertse Singing Competition (2015). Cecilia performed as soloist in TUT’s 2015 production of The Coronation Mass (W.A. Mozart).

In 2016 she performed the role of Fiordiligi in TUT’s student production of Cosi Fan Tutte (W.A Mozart) and was awarded first prize in the Phillip H Moore Music Competition. In the same year she won the best South African song in the finals of ATKV competition and she was awarded second prize of Muzicanto 2016 competition in Cape Town. She also received the 2 nd price at UNISA National Competition in 2017 in Pretoria and also was arwarded First Price for ATKV singing competion 2017 in Cape Town together with the price for Best South African Sing in the semi-finals . She is currently learning First Lady with UCT and Cape Town Opera production of Die Zauberflote by W A Mozart. Cecilia is now a studio member at Cape Town Opera 2017.

Cecilia is passionate, hardworking and would love to further her vocal studies and perform abroad.

PHILIPPUS HUGO

 Philippus Hugo obtained the degrees B.Mus, B.Mus(hons) and M.Mus (Cum Laude) in piano performing from the University of Stellenbosch under the guidance of Juliana de Villiers. He makes his solo debut with the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra at the age of 16. During his student years, he regularly performd as soloist with the CTPO, Natal Philharmonic, Stellenbosch Symphony Orchestra and the Hugo Lambrechts Symphony Orchestra.

In 1992 he was appointed official accompanist at the Hugo Lambrechts Music Centre, a post he held for 5 years before accepting a teaching post at Rustenburg Girls school. After teaching for 5 years he was appointed as accompanist at the University of Stellenbosch in 2001, where he still works as part time accompanist.

Since 1994 until 2010 he was the official accompanist for the ABSA National music competition in Port Elizabeth and performed as accompanist for the SANLAM music competition in Cape Town. He is a regular accompanist for the ATKV Musique, Artscape Competition, UNISA gr8 and Overseas Bursary Competition as well as freelance accompanist for national arts festivals like the KKNK, KKK, Darling Voorkamerfest and the Greyton Genadendal Classics for All Festival.

In 2011 he was asked to perform with the American singers Kennethia Mitchell and Lawrence Craig Jr at the annual Maputo International Music Festival. In 2012 and currently he is the official accompanist for the Muziquante Competition. In 2012 he was a guest artist at the Harare Music Festival in Zimbabwe.

Philippus Hugo is also a chef and he and his partner run the well known Driefontein Farm Restaurant in the Overberg.

CANTIQUE CHAMBER CHOIR

The Cantique Chamber choir is made up of sixteen voices from the Robertson Valley under the baton of Jaco Beeslaar, a local music teacher and organist. All the members are amateur singers and come from varied careers. Cantique mostly sings works from the Classical repertoire and in April 2013 they performed at the Klein Karoo National Arts Festival. Later that year they performed Haydn’s Nelson Mass with the St George’s Singers and the Cape Town Philharmonic under the direction of Dr Barry Smith at the Klein Karoo Klassique in Oudtshoorn. In 2014 and 2016 they appeared at the Greyton and Genadendal Classics for All Festival for the first time with “Vocal Alchemy” – a collection of choir works through the centuries. More recently they collaborated with the Ewens Trio of Robertson with their highly successful program ‘Affaire Française’. This concert was dedicated entirely to the music of Gabriel Fauré with the main work his hauntingly beautiful Requiem in D minor.