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Madiba the African Opera at the South African State Theatre

Madiba the African OperaMadibe the African opera is a work was created by HRH Unathi Phathuxolo Mtirara, composed by Sibusiso Njeza and orchestrated by Kutlwano Masote. It begins in the village of Mqhekezweni, a couple of years before the birth of President Nelson Mandela, Mqhekezweni is the original Great Place of King Dalindyebo, it was seen in the olden days as the place where modern civilization amongst the Thembu Kingdom was introduced, Christianity, Education and other western ways of living started and were natured more in Mqhekezweni during the times of King Dalindyebo, such ways of living continued even after he had passed on and was adopted by one of his sons who became Regent King, Jongintaba who remained as the head of the village and later the Regent King of the AbaThembu Kingdom standing in at a place of his brothers son who was still too young to rule the Kingdom.

During the early 1900, Mqhekezweni has seen many young leaders being groomed from this village, it be leaders in politics, religious, traditional even business. Mqhekezweni has always been the centre of the history of all successful Thembu’s as Kings and leaders were born and raised in this village, we note in particular the birth of King Sabatha Dalindyebo
who later flee to exile in Lusaka in defiance of the apartheid system, the upbringing of former President Nelson Rholihlahla Mandela to name but a few, in this Opera, we follow Madiba the African Opera - Created by Unathi Mtirara (librettist), Music by Sibusiso Njeza and Orchestrated by Kutlwano Masotethe ways of leadership that Nelson Mandela learned in Mqhekezweni and all what he encountered during and after Mqhekezweni, we follow how his family lost their seat in traditional leadership of the Kingdom after his father Chief Gadla Mphakanyiswa refused to appear before the white magistrate in Mthatha thus living the young Nelson Mandela to be raised by the Regent King Jongintaba Mtirara in Mqhekezweni Great Place with his cousin Justice Mtirara.

Mqhekezweni Thembu Royal Great Place during Nelson Mandela childhood
Mqhekezweni Thembu Royal Great Place during Nelson Mandela childhood

We follow these 2 young men’s (Justice and Nelson) up bringing until the time where they live Mqhekezweni for Johannesburg and what they encountered along the way, the reaction of the King when he realises that the boys have ran away from home, the actions that he takes to bring them home, Nelson Mandela defying the Kings orders for the first time in his life and continuing with what he believed would change the lives of all South Africans for the better “POLITICS”, Justice returns to Mqhekezweni as the Chief of the village, later in the years Nelson Mandela marries Nomzamo Winnie Madikizela, he is found guilty by the apartheid government and he is sentenced life in prison, 27 years later he becomes the first black democratically elected president of the Republic of South Africa. Madiba the African Opera - character playing King Dalindyebo from MqhekezweniThe show starts on the 23rd May 2014 at 20H00 at the State Theatre in Pretoria. It will run until the 1st of June at the same venue, then move to the Nelson Mandela Museum in Qunu on the former Prsident Nelson Mandela’s birthday, 18 July 2014. The last one will be at the Port Elizabeth Opera House for 3 nights from 19th-31st July 2014

Ahh! Dalibhunga! Dlomo, Madiba, Yem-Yem, Zondwa, Sophitsho, Ngqolomsila, Vela bambhentsele, Tubhana, Qhumpase, Tande, MThembu, Ncikoza, Mtshikilana, Malangana, oZondwa zintshaba ezingasoze zimenzele nto.

Ahh Dalibunga!!! Dalibhunga ka Mphakanyiswa (Gadla) ka Mandela ka Ngubengcuka ka Ndaba ka Zondwa ka Tato ka Madiba ka Hala ka Dlomo ka Nxeko ka(Mboti?) kaNtande  ka Toyi ka Ceduma (Cedwini) kaDunakazi ka Bhomoyi ka Thembu ka Ntongakazi ka Malandela ka Njanya ka Mbulali ka Zwide…!

NguMthembu obhuzu-bhuzu! Unontsedwane, ooMaqath’alukhuni, ongengomXhosa, kodwa enguMThembu, ethethisiXhosa.