Looking Back

Uliana Alexeyev

Wagner / Verdi / CPO November 28, 2013

The Richard Wagner Society is delighted to announce a collaboration with the Verdi Society and the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra to celebrate the bicentenary of these composers who changed the face of opera.

Bookings for the City Hall concert will open on August 1 at Computicket and Artscape Dial a Seat.

The Cast:

Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra

Conductor: Bernhard Gueller

Soloists: Michelle Breedt, mezzo

Hlengiwe Mkhwanazi, soprano

Tshepo Moagi, tenor

Riaan Hunter, baritone

Siyabulela Ntlale

Thesele Kemane, bass

Bongani Khebeka, bass

Siyabulela Ntlale

Bongani Khubeka

Thesele Kemane

Voices of Cape Town.

The programme:
Wesendoncklieder, arias from Tannhauser, Lohengrin, La Traviata, Don Carlo, Simon Boccanegra and Luisa Miller.



Farida Bacharova / Albie van Schalkwyk

Farida Bacharova / Uliana Alexeyev

Avigail Bushakewitz

Quentin Crida

Le Convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali

Donizetti: Le Convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali

Conductor: Kamal Khan

Director: Lara Bye

Donizetti was smiling at the way his opera, Le Convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali, also known as  ‘Viva la Mamma’  turned out in the 2012 Suidoosterfees in the Kyknet Theatre at Artscape on February 16, 18 and 19.  The audiences – and those at the final dress rehearsal were delighted at the way art mirrored life or life mirrored art!  Baritone Siyabulela Ntlale in the title role of Donna Agata impressed the critic at Die Burger, as did Hlengiwe Mkhwanazi as the prima donna, Daria, in particular.


Donna Agata: Siyabulela Ntlale
Daria: Hlengiwe Mkhwanazi
Procolo: Thesele Kemane Procolo
Poet: Thando Mpushe
Maestro: Mandisinde Mbuyazwe
Luigia: Linda Nteleza
Guglielmo: Makudupanyane Senaoana
Pippetto: Karen Van Der Walt
Impresario/director: Phelo Nodlayiya
Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra


What the critics said:

“Siyabulela Ntlale as Mamma is very funny … Hlengiwe Mkhwanazi as Dari impressed. Makudupanyane Senoana as the German tenor was also good.” – Naude van der Merwe, Die Burger, February 18, 2012
…”a production which was charmingly innocent in its direct approach. The humour is real, neither contrived nor clever … This was the grubby, unflattering world of rehearsal and the milieu was neatly captured in Kramer’s efficient set … The cast do well … Ntlale (‘s) … sheer physicality tended to dominate the stage and his personality was quite its match…
“The production was a credit to the Richard Wagner Society of SA and confirms its status as a serious player in SA’s opera firmament” – Deon Irish, Cape Times, February 21, 2012

Karlsruhe Concert Duo

 Founded in 1997 by cellist Reinhard Armleder and pianist Dagmar Hartmann, the Karlsruhe Concert Duo has established a name for itself far beyond the borders of Germany by winning several international competitions. The Duo is regularly highly praised for fascinating its public by the depth of its interpretations, brilliant technique and its imaginative choice of programmes. Having been inspired by master classes with artists such as Lynn Harrell, Steven Isserlis, Janos Starker and the Beaux Arts Trio, the Duo has recorded for television, radio and CDs. 


Schumann:                      Fantasy Pieces, opus 73

Mendelssohn:                  Song without words in D, opus  109

Chopin:                           Introduction and Polonaise brillante in C,  opus 3

Liszt :                             Liebestraum (arr : Cassadó)

Wagner :                         An den Abenstern from Tannhäuser

Smetana                          From Ma Vlast, no 1

Zdeněk Fibich                   Poeme

Dvorak                             Humoresque, opis 101, no  7

Martinů                            Variations on a theme by Rossini   

Tickets for the recital on February 17th are R150 for members and R180 for guests, and include wine and snacks. 

They can be obtained from Herbert Gloeckner herbo@iafrica.com or tel: 021 439 3295


February 17, 2013

18H00 for 18H30

37 Kingsgate, 301 Beach Road, Sea Point, 7th Floor,

Ring 701 for access




Did Wagner Incite Hitler To Commit The Holocaust?

Join us at the public lecture at the Holocaust Centre, Cape Town, on November 25.


Christopher Nicholson, eminent judge, author and RWS member, will give a public lecturer under the auspices of the Holocaust Centre and the Richard Wagner Society of South Africa.

Holocaust Centre

88 Hatfield Street


November 25, 2012

6 pm

RSVP admin@holocaust.org.za / 021 462 5553



Latvian Ring 2013

The Richard Wagner Society, in co-operation with InBerlin Reisen, is offering another spectacular opera tour to Berlin, Dessau and Riga


If you missed the exciting 2012 spring opera tour, don’t miss the Wagner Society’s next one! Only 20 can get to see The Ring in Riga…

Der Fliegende Holländer

Wagner: Der Fliegende Holländer

Conductor: Kamal Khan

Director: Lara Bye

Playing to two full houses at Artscape Opera on January 27 and 29, 2011, The Flying Dutchman reached and charmed two sold out houses in the 2011 Suidoosterfees. This was the first time the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra joined with the Richard Wagner Society, and the first time the Wagner Festival Chorus was featured. This chorus comprised 40 young singers from the townships, not one of whom had been inside an opera house, heard an opera or spoke German.


The Cast:

Senta: Nkosazana Dimande
Dutchman: Gary Simpson
Steuerman: Sonnyboy Dladla
Daland: Rouel Beukes
Eric: Matthew Overmeyer
Mary: Karen van der Walt
Cape Town Philharmoic Orchestra


What the critics said:

“Besonderer ‘Hollander’ ‘n lus vir die oog en oor!” – Pieter Kooij, Die Burger
“The Wagner Society really did us all a great favour …. Lara Bye’s vibrant and accessible production of Wagner’s opera is tailor-made for Capetonians …. Kamal Khan does an amazing job with Wagner’s richly complex score.” – Fiona Chisholm, The Cape Times
“What a triumph … a standing ovation on the sensational first night.” – Rodney Trudgeon, Fine Music Radio