Grammy Award winning Isicathamiya group Ladysmith Black Mambazo have concluded their Nelson Mandela centenary celebrations with three consecutive performances in Pretoria.
Music fans were treated to a two-hour long Isicathamiya live music show each evening since Friday at the capital city’s State Theatre over the weekend.
President Cyril Ramaphosa attended the last day of the event on Sunday. South Africa’s leading Isicathamiya music group is touring the world to celebrate Nelson Mandela’s centenary. The group was one of late former President Nelson Mandela’s favourites.
In 1993 Ladysmith Black Mambazo accompanied Mandela to Oslo, in Norway, when he received the Nobel Peace Prize and also performed for him during his inauguration.
Their three day performance in Pretoria was described by fans as an outstanding event. “Their performance was great, I like that one of “Homeless,” says one of the fans.
The group’s leader Albert Mazibuko says the event reminds them of some of the songs that Madiba loved and would dance to during their performances. “But the one that’s important because it tells his story is called Long Walk To Freedom. That one tells his entire story until he was inaugurated as a president. The song goes like this:- “Sakhe sa luthola isizo, sahke saku beletha, Long walk, long walk to freedom.”. Oh he loved it and every time he will just climb the stage and dance with us. I remember in England.”
Ramophosa commended them for being good ambassadors. “The fact that we’ve a product like Black Mambazo is a course for us today as we receive their fifth Grammy to celebrate. So tonight, this afternoon we actually celebrated them because they’ve exported the country. They’re far better than the gold, the diamond, the platinum and the wine that we export. They’re the real thing.”
The group first came together in the early 1960s under the guidance of its founder Professor Joseph Shabalala. The group is also working on discovering fresh talent through their program called Ladysmith mobile academy. Click below for more on the story :