NO Tenors Allowed…22 May 2016

The world of opera is dominated by the big voiced tenors thundering out that  a hopeless battle to find love or lust is about to get under way,  or that no one shall sleep until their ego is soothed. However, most true opera lovers realise that the fabulous coloratura of a soprano or the soothing sounds of a mezzo is where the real charisma of opera lies. So – with a soprano and a mezzo in the works – throw in a magical country setting, two pianists and a wanna-be baritone and you have a recipe for an entertaining afternoon filled with some of the most memorable melodies ever composed.

Born in the beautiful Winelands town of Paarl, Jo-Nette Lekay displayed an exceptional talent for music at an early age. After completing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Geography, she decided to pursue her career in singing and enrolled for a Performance Licentiate in Singing at Stellenbosch University.

She has sung for Nelson Mandela, King Gustav of Sweden and Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and after having performed all over South Africa as well as in the United Kingdom and Europe she has now made Grahamstown her home, accepting a post as voice lecturer at Rhodes University.

Her vocal mentor was South African mezzo soprano Jean Stuart – Jean taught her the Italian ‘Bel Canto’ style of singing, which proved to suit her voice perfectly.

Elizabeth Lombard is returning to her home province for what has become an all too rare live performance. Having studied under Lionel van Zyl at NMMU when she was still an undergrad she has honed her skill under the guidance of Werner Nel in Potchefstroom and currently calls the great South African Diva, Emma Renzi, her mentor. Her rise through the opera fraternity in South Africa has been stellar – starting as chorus member for the now defunct PACT, to being artistic director and co-founder of Gauteng’s Big Wig Opera. She has performed opera, oratorio and lieder to critical and public acclaim.

Elizabeth and Jo-Nette will perform music by Tchaikovsky, Donizetti, Gounod, Massenet, Rossini and more of the best loved arias and duets from world of opera. Hopefield Hosts, Kobus Buys and Gerhard Maritz will transform their baby grand into an orchestral sound world to accompany the divas.

As usual the performance will be followed by a spread of canapes, snacks and tit-bits served in the garden of Hopefield Country House, as well as a wine surprise from NLR Wines. A cash bar will also be available.


22 May 2016




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