Royal Festival Hall
The life of Nelson Mandela is brought to the stage in an epic operatic tribute. Wales Millennium Centre and Cape Town Opera present the story of one of the world's most iconic figures. It follows Mandela from tribal initiation rites on the banks of the Mbashe River and heady and rebellious jazz-fuelled days in Sophiatown, to incarceration and reflection on Robben Island and finally freedom and liberation. Cape Town Opera’s celebration of Mandela’s life is a spectacular portrait of a man who touched hearts and minds around the world. Presented in three parts, by a cast of over 60 performers including three different incarnations of Mandela, the contrasting phases of his journey are recreated through strikingly divergent styles of music. The upbeat jazz- and swing-influenced songs of Sophiatown in the central section of the piece are framed on either side by more familiar contemporary opera forms. A dash of authentic Xhosa folk music grounds the production in the sounds and culture of South Africa. The work of two different composers, Mandela Trilogy reflects both a life of extraordinary contrasts, and an overarching theme of unflinching courage in the face of adversity.