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Osmo Vänskä /// Music Director

Press Room: Press Releases

Makaziwe Mandela and film producer Anant Singh join Minnesota Orchestra as guest speakers at "Celebrating Mandela" concert, July 20

Additional vocal ensembles now featured on the concert include Minnesota State Baptist Convention Choir and South African ensemble 29:11


The Minnesota Orchestra will be joined by two South African luminaries at its “Celebrating Mandela at 100” concert, Friday, July 20, at Orchestra Hall. Dr. Makaziwe (Maki) Mandela, the eldest daughter of Nelson Mandela, and Anant Singh, producer of the film Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, will serve as guest speakers in a concert designed to commemorate the late Nobel Peace Prize-winning South African leader and human rights advocate Nelson Mandela.

Led by Music Director Osmo Vänskä, the program will also feature South African choral music—performed by a cappella trio Insingizi, South African choral ensemble 29:11, the Minnesota Chorale and the Minnesota State Baptist Convention Choir, among other ensembles—and the Minnesota Orchestra offering movements from Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite and Dvořák’s New World Symphony. The concert, which will be held just two days after Mandela’s 100th birthday, is part of the Orchestra’s “Music for Mandela” Sommerfest celebration, running from July 13 to August 1. Following Sommerfest, Vänskä will lead the Minnesota Orchestra on a five-city tour to South Africa.

“Celebrating Mandela at 100” is held at Orchestra Hall in downtown Minneapolis on Friday, July 20, at 8 p.m. Advance reservations can be made at minnesotaorchestra.org and by phone at 612-371-5656. Entrance to this special concert will be “pay what you are able.” In addition, audience members are encouraged to bring donations of books for Books for Africa.

Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, Makaziwe (Maki) Mandela is the eldest daughter of Nelson Mandela and his first wife, Evelyn Mase. Just four years old when her parents divorced, Maki Mandela visited her father on weekends throughout her childhood, even after he went underground as an anti-apartheid activist. Later she visited him in prison on Robben Island. The recipient of a Fulbright Distinguished Fellowship Award, Maki Mandela earned a doctorate in anthropology at the University of Massachusetts; she was studying in Massachusetts when Nelson Mandela was released from prison in 1990. Dr. Mandela has subsequently worked for a number of academic institutions in South Africa and abroad, as well as for the Development Bank of Southern Africa. She has presented numerous papers over the years on the role of women in a changing South Africa. Today, Dr. Mandela is the Chairman of the House of Mandela, a business she started with her daughter, Tukwini, in 2010, and serves on the board of the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

Born and raised in Durban in apartheid-era South Africa, Anant Singh joined the fight against apartheid using the medium of film to make South Africa’s first anti-apartheid movies. Today he is recognized as South Africa’s pre-eminent film producer, having produced more than 80 movies. Nelson Mandela called him “a producer I respect very much...a man of tremendous ability” when he granted Singh the film rights to his autobiography. The ensuing 2013 film, titled Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, received critical acclaim and garnered several awards, including a Golden Globe Award. Singh is also responsible for many of the most profound anti-apartheid films made in South Africa, among which are Sarafina!; Cry, the Beloved Country; and Place of Weeping, the first anti-apartheid film to be made entirely in South Africa, as well as Yesterday, the first South African film to receive an Academy Award® nomination, The First Grader; Red Dust; Remember; Shepherds and Butchers and the Mexican film Museo, which won a Golden Bear Award at the Berlin Film Festival this year. His notable documentaries include Countdown to Freedom, about the first democratic election in South Africa; Prisoners of Hope, about a reunion on Robben Island of 1,250 of its former political prisoners led by Mandela; Hero for All which documents Nelson Mandela’s farewell visit to the United States as he stepped down from the South African Presidency; and Barack Obama: People’s President.


Sommerfest
CELEBRATING MANDELA AT 100

Friday, July 20, 2018, 8 p.m. / Orchestra Hall

Minnesota Orchestra                                        Osmo Vänskä, conductor
Makaziwe Mandela, speaker                           Anant Singh, speaker
Insingizi, vocal ensemble                                    29:11, vocal ensemble
Minnesota Chorale                                            Minnesota State Baptist Convention Choir 

Osmo Vänskä leads an evening of pageantry celebrating the late Nelson Mandela on his centenary in words, video tributes and music. Featuring speakers Dr. Makaziwe Mandela, Nelson Mandela’s eldest daughter, and Anant Singh, producer of the film Long Walk to Freedom, the concert also includes special musical guests, ranging from the a cappella trio Insingizi and South African choral ensemble 29:11 to the Minnesota Chorale and Minnesota State Baptist Convention Choir, who will perform South African choral music alongside the Orchestra. Vänskä will lead the Orchestra in movements from Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite and Dvořák’s New World Symphony.

Tickets: Reservations can be made at minnesotaorchestra.org and by phone at 612-371-5656. Entrance to this concert is “pay what you are able.” In addition, audience members are encouraged to bring donations of books for Books for Africa.

 

Music for Mandela Sponsors
The Minnesota Orchestra’s tour to South Africa is funded by generous contributions from an anonymous couple, and from the Douglas and Louise Leatherdale Fund for Music. Additional funding for the Music for Mandela project is provided by a consortium of corporations based in Minnesota that to-date includes Ecolab, TCF Financial Corporation, Medtronic, Land O’Lakes, 3M, U.S. Bank, Thor Construction, Target and Pentair.


TICKET PURCHASING INFORMATION

Individual tickets and subscription packages can be purchased online at minnesotaorchestra.org, or by calling 612-371-5656 (612-371-5642 for subscriptions) or 800-292-4141. Tickets can be purchased in person at the Orchestra Hall Box Office, 1111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis (Stage Door ticketing is open Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Lobby Box Office ticketing begins two hours before all ticketed performances); and at the skyway accessible Minnesota Orchestra Administrative Office, International Centre, 5th floor, 920 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis (open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). For more information, call 612-371-5656, or visit minnesotaorchestra.org. For subscriptions, call 612-371-5642 or visit minnesotaorchestra.org/subscribe. For groups of 10 or more, call 612-371-5662. 

All programs, artists, dates, times and prices subject to change. 

The Star Tribune is the Minnesota Orchestra’s media partner for the 2017-18 season.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

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PRESS CONTACT:

Gwen Pappas, Director of Public Relations 
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Emma Plehal, Public Relations Writer and Coordinator
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Press Contacts

Gwen Pappas

Director of Communications
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Carl Schroeder

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Emma Plehal

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Isaac Risseeuw

Social Media and Content Coordinator
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Communications Office

Minnesota Orchestra
1111 Nicollet Mall
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55403
Phone: 612.371.5600
Fax: 612.371.7170

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