Acclaimed jazz and opera singer Sibongile Khumalo has an impressive career spanning more than 20 years. She has won multiple awards both musically and academically for her work in the music industry. Khumalo met pianist, vocalist and composer Nomfundo Xaluva when they were both invited to perform at a tribute concert for Miriam Makeba a year after she passed away. For the tribute, Xaluva had been assigned the mammoth task of creating a narrative of Makeba’s life and history through weaving her songs together. A beautiful story emerged and Khumalo was able to experience the young singer’s brilliance.
‘When she sang, I heard a clear, bright tone, heartfelt interpretation and a technical command that was most refreshing. I heard her, and knew that this was a voice to remember for the future,’ says Khumalo. That was in 2009, and now Xaluva has won a Metro FM award for Best Urban Jazz Album for her debut album Kusile, described as having great lyrical and emotional depth. She has also won the Arts and Culture Trust impACT award – Music and Singing (an award that recognises young professionals).
These accolades, Khumalo says, are indicators of Xaluva’s future success. This is an artist who has grown and matured, and deepened her knowledge of herself and her craft. WORDS FOR THE YOUNG STAR ‘I have seen your discipline and focus. I have felt the passion for what you have chosen to be. I have observed your deep spiritual sensibility. I have experienced your musicianship and depth. All of these are essential ingredients for longevity.’