Simthandile Mtolo. Picture: Instagram
Simthandile Mtolo. Picture: Instagram

'It Grows, The Musical' puts a spotlight on 'life as a black woman'

By Kedibone Modise Time of article published Nov 27, 2020

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Durban-based creative genius Simthandile Mtolo is showcasing her a solo music revue and art exhibition at the Seabrooke’s Theatre, from December 3-5.

Titled “It Grows, The Musical”, Mtolo will be releasing music that has been simmering for a very long time.

This is music that she wrote over the years, which she has held onto waiting for the right time to perform.

Mtolo will also be exhibiting a range of pieces she has been working on, inspired by introspective growth and the ability to acquire absolute satisfaction from reaching within.

Her pieces use wool and printed fabrics and mostly admire the authentic features of African women.

The musical and exhibition put the spotlight on “love and the life” of a black woman.

Commenting on the inspiration behind the show, Mtolo explains: “Contrary to popular belief, a black woman can be "A Rock" but she can also be real, and she can be relevant, and tender, and sensitive, and opinionated and wise.

She adds: “I am a black woman, and I live among many others who too represent power, and beauty, and the ability and desire to nurture more than just our immediate folk. There is more to us than pain, and tears and sorrow.

“We are also are beautiful, and we are in dire need of learning to love one another as girls.

“There are many things my music touches on... Things that touch on the misconceptions as well as the corrections about black women."

When asked about the inspiration for the show, Mtolo explains: “It began as a means to help boost my spirits, knowing that trimming and ridding myself of unnecessary weight was what would give space for fresh growth. Letting go is so liberating. So much so that I encourage it.”

With a career spanning over 15 years, the seasoned songstress and multi-disciplined arts practitioner says the lockdown period gave her a chance to nurture her craft.

“I source my energy and willpower from an audience. The lockdown and the Covid restrictions were the last straw but on a personal note, I was feeling swamped.

"By my hair and the image I portrayed... the energy I was attracting changed and I needed to realign and re-establish my depth.

“I cut my 8-year-old locks, and just started stripping myself of everything I couldn't recognise and represent. It took a lot of tears and prayer, but God saw me through. I was able to rekindle dying flames for things that made me settle as an arts professional.”

She adds: “There is a song that stuck to me as a young girl. The lyrics question, 'What good is a song if it can't inspire'. And indeed even today I concur.

“What good is it if it leaves you empty? I want to inspire truth in people. I want to plant seeds into their souls so that they can evoke their worth. Not to impress, but to become an inspiration themselves.”

Event Information:

Venue: Seabrooke’s Theatre

Date: 3 - 5 December 2020

Time: 7pm

Tickets: R150, available at Webtickets.

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