TU NOKWE has been given a leading role in Toronto, where the critically-acclaimed Obeah Opera takes to the stage during the prestigious Luminato Festival next month.
Legendary actress Tu Nokwe will take a leading role in a new South African play, Obeah Opera, expected to entertain crowds at the Luminato Festival, Toronto’s International Festival of Arts and Ideas in Toronto.

Nokwe is a singer, guitarist, composer, lyricist, recording artist, author, teacher and businesswoman whose work is driven by her passion for children, community and social justice.

She has performed around the world widespread acclaim.

Nokwe initially taught music to township children in her family’s Amajika Youth and Children’s Art Project.

On their arrival in South Africa on a mission to look for and recruit local talent, Canadians Nicole Brooks, and Anthony “Prime” Guerra recognised Nokwe and were astounded by her performance during the African auditions, held in the Joburg Theatre in February.

Obeah Opera is a woman’s story, created by a woman and told by women, it is described as a “hand-clapping, foot-stomping, spirit-lifting and magical musical sensation”.

Steeped in black music, it is sung entirely a cappella by a powerful all-female cast.

The play creates an opportunity for South Africa and Canada to strengthen relationships, and to share history and some common vision.

It presents an opportunity for Canada and the world to join in celebrating the South African story and reflect on the socio-economic progress achieved here since 1994.

The South African edition of Obeah Opera is co-produced by chief director Denis Ackulay and supported by MyArts International, a South African production company.

Nokwe’s performance will exemplify the role of ‘The Elder’, the dominant female energy, matriarch and overall Goddess/Mother Earth/ Mama Africa incarnate, who watches and protects her daughters who were stolen from Africa during the Salem witch trials - the most famous witch hunt in US history.

Obeah Opera is commissioned by the Luminato Festival, which is one of the leading arts festivals in the US, having commissioned more than 100 new works of art, with more than 3600 performances featuring around 15000 artists from about 40 countries.

Set to hit the stage from June 11 - 22, Luminato is set to be the official launching pad for Obeah Opera’s inevitable international tour.

CAPE TIMES