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Odyssey of an African Opera Singer – Musa Ngqungwana

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Odyssey of an African Opera Singer – Musa Ngqungwana

Musa Ngqungwana discusses his book Odyssey of an African Opera Singer. (Camera & Editing: Darlene Creamer)

21st February 2018

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An inspiring story of one man’s rise from poverty and oppression to success and fame in the international world of opera...

It is a difficult undertaking for any human to escape the cycle of poverty, but to do so from one of the world’s most complex political systems, with a brutal history of segregation and deprivation, is nothing short of a miracle. Yet Musa Ngqungwana’s story doesn’t end there.

Not only did he manage to extricate himself from his impoverished past, but he found his way to the great opera houses of the world, attaining immense success in an affluent art form that bears no resemblance to his upbringing or culture. Musa’s life and career are proof that any human can overcome the devastating effects of discrimination and poverty.

Odyssey of an African Opera Singer chronicles Musa’s journey from the townships of South Africa to the world stage. It is a story of hope, showing how humans, no matter their situation, have the opportunity to claim their gifts, develop them and use them to help others in need. A captivating story that will inspire anyone who has ever had a dream...

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About the author

A native of Port Elizabeth, South Africa, bass-baritone Musa Ngqungwana has been the recipient of critical acclaim from The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times and Opera News, and has performed leading roles with prestigious opera companies and orchestras around the world, including the English National Opera, the Glimmerglass Festival, the Canadian Opera Company, the Los Angeles Opera and the Washington National Opera, among others. Musa was the Grand Finals winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, and graduated with honours in Performance (First Class) from the University of Cape Town. He is also a graduate of the prestigious Academy of Vocal Arts (AVA) in Philadelphia, USA. Throughout his career, Musa has worked with internationally renowned stage directors and conductors, including Emmanuel Villaume, Paul Curran, Francesca Zambello, Philippe Auguin, Marco Armiliato, Calixto Bieito, Fabien Gabel, Corrado Rovaris, Thaddeus Strassberger, Gianfranco De Bosio and Keri-Lynn Wilson.

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Odyssey of an African Opera Singer is published by Penguin Random House South Africa

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