Struggle icon Denis Goldberg gets a standing ovation from the audience at the Hugo Lambrecht Auditorium in Parow, where he held a fund-raising 85th birthday concert to build an arts centre in Hout Bay, known as the House of Hope. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)
Riviona trialist Denis Goldberg used his 85th birthday celebrations to raise funds for a multimillion-rand centre, House of Hope, which will be built in Hout Bay to provide music lessons, performing arts, life and language skills.

Renowned artists, including Yvonne Chaka Chaka, the Cape Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, the UCT Piano Quartet and Dizu Plaatjies, performed at the concert, held at Hugo Lambrechts Auditorium in Parow last night.

Goldberg said it was “fulfilling and an honour to raise money for House of Hope”. He said it was a “great honour” that the musicians had agreed to perform for free in honour of his birthday and to help raise funds for the arts centre.

“These musicians are young South Africans who emerged after apartheid. My dream is to see young and old dance and sing together in harmony.

“They (musicians) sing for the love of it, not for the money.”

Chaka Chaka told the audience that when she was invited, she “could not say no to a man who stayed in that horrible jail for 22 years fighting for my dignity”.

Referring to Goldberg, she said: “Thank you for giving me back my dignity.

“We are here today for one reason: to give back to our community, and what a way, through music and digging deep into our pockets.

“This man could have had his 85th birthday at home but here he is with us.”

As her last song for the event, Chaka Chaka sang a happy birthday song for Goldberg.

Musician Gareth Lubbe said to sing at the event was “amazing and rewarding”.

“(Goldberg) always has tears in his eyes when he listens to music, especially when young people are involved.

‘‘He has a passion to bring people together through the arts,” said Lubbe.

He pleaded with the public to assist in creating the centre.

“The House of Hope is going to bring all the cultures across South Africa together and the centre is going to give an opportunity for those who love arts to be part of it,” he said.

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