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By Anna Cocks

This article is exclusive to the Online Edition 6 of VARSITY News.


Forget your weekend plans and go to the Baxter Theatre to see Tankiso Mamabolo’s musical performance, Tankiso Live: The Audacity To Be.



One could say that Tankiso is South Africa’s very own Adele. She possesses a strong and confident voice that matches her audacious personality. Her voice is deep and soulful and is guaranteed to send chills down your spine. She is down-to earth and real with the audience. Her attention-gripping performance is one for the books.


Her confidence is inspired by the title of her performance, The Audacity To Be, which she says, “challenges me to live up to it and do what I said I would do, which is to be brave and be audacious and to speak my truth.”


In her show, she sings along with 5 members from the band, Sweet Chilli, who accompanies her with a trumpet, drums, keys, a guitar and bass. Her two friends stand beside her as backup singers to bring in that alto and soprano harmony.


This music concert is an album waiting to be released where every song speaks to an issue – womanhood, inclusivity and being true to yourself – or simply a song like “Playful Heart” written for Tankiso by a Swedish composer that explores the ideas of love and being human. Besides two songs, Tankiso wrote all the other songs she performed, and sang in English, isiXhosa and Sotho.  


Tankiso, through music and song, takes you on a journey. She guides us through her youth as a little girl in the Eastern Cape; we relive moments of love, loss and longing, and our hearts break (again) when her soulful voice urges us to #RememberMarikana. There is another moment in the show that is quite harrowing; when she honours and give homage to women who have been and are victims of gender-based violence. And then, finally ending this alluring, emotional voyage of a show with pure dancing and African rhythm.


It’s an all-inclusive show and I urge all UCT students to go see it. It’s important for us to support local musicians who cater for a wide audience of many cultures and tongues.


Her concert will be running from the 6thAugust to the 17thAugust at the Baxter. Tickets are only R60 for students.


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