The Oratorio of a Forgotten Youth will once again be performed on stage by The Amandla Freedom Ensemble, led by 2019 Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz Mandla Mlangeni. This performance will reimagine jazz through the lens of poetry, classical musings, and the legacy of “black consciousness” in South Africa.
The culmination of the joint project will be a dazzling performance by Jozi’s top jazz, classical, and indigenous musicians. The Vivacious Sounds Choir, renowned sand artist Tawanda Mu Afrika, prominent academic, pianist, and scholar Yonela Mnana, as well as a libretto by award-winning poet and theatre practitioner Lesego Rampolokeng, will present The Oratorio on January 28 and 29 at Johannesburg’s The Market Theatre.
“Our foray into the classical world is an opportunity to give voice to new expression within the structural confines of Western Art, while also drawing from the deep well of indigenous music by creating cultural avenues that allow for audiences to tap into new and unimagined worlds”, says Mlangeni. The production, commemorating the June 16 and Fees Must Fall events through a musical and theatrical narrative, reflects the turbulence that South Africa finds itself in.
The seemingly disjointed genre of arts is attractive in its audacity to re-imagine a cutting-edge jazz ensemble paired with The Resonance Strings – Johannesburg’s premiere string quartet – and the Vivacious Sounds Choir. One is bound to be drawn to the boldness of the project in that it will create new and interesting narratives, juxtaposed with choral renditions of the struggles of our past while swinging through the perplexities of our present day and cementing the foundations of our future.
The Oratorio of a Forgotten Youth is supported by The Wits School of Arts, the National Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences, and the National Arts Council in collaboration with The Market Theatre Foundation. This creative pairing seeks to be the springboard for the production and execution of bold new ideas of reimagining spaces for creative discourse.
Tickets for The Oratorio of a Forgotten Youth cost R150 per person and can be booked at Webtickets
The Amandla Freedom Ensemble is composed of:
Mandla Mlangeni and Michael Nkuna on trumpet
Ofentse Sebula on tenor sax
Kgetsi Nkotsi and Junior Matsila on trombone
Mark Fransman piano and reeds
Dalisu Ndlazi on bass
Siphiwe Shiburi on drums
Social Media handles:
Facebook: @MandlaMlangeni @TheMarketTheatre
Instagram: @mandlasmlangeni @markettheatre
Twitter: @MandlaMlangen12 @MarketTheatre