Cape Town – Simphiwe Dana is making her triumphant return to the stage at the Simphiwe Dana Annual Congregation at The Lyric Theatre in Gold Reef City on Saturday, 2 March 2019.
The performance will be her first since her successful recovery from vocal surgery and is set to be a very moving and memorable one. Ahead of the prolific musician's return to the spotlight, Channel24 spoke to Simphiwe about her years in the industry and about singing for the first time since going under the knife.
HERE'S CHANNEL24'S INTERVIEW WITH SIMPHIWE DANA:
About her upcoming show, the singer said: "The Bassline and I have had a show annually, for quite a number of years. It’s a special show for my fans and as a result you’ll see them singing along to each and every song, to a point where they even drown my voice out. They believe that it’s their show and they own it. They give of themselves, physically, emotionally and spiritually and it’s a beautiful thing to see. The energy in there is unlike any of my other shows. It’s a very special event that they make their own. It’s the first show that I’m doing this year since my surgery. It’s going to be an eventful day especially because I’ll be testing out my new voice."
Is Simphiwe nervous about returning to the stage at such a hotly anticipated event? No, because she knows that she will make it a success like she has in previous years because her fans expect it. She elaborated: "My fans are the most critical of me (laughs). They’ll be like ‘no, she didn’t sing that song like she does on the CD’ you know? They know the songs note for note so I cannot pull the wool over their eyes. So, we’re going to bring them a kickass show, like we normally do every year."
Looking back across her discography, the talented star struggled to pick one song she loves more than all the rest, saying: "It’s now my fifteenth year in the industry. And when I’m performing, I really love Unthandazo Wase Afrika, I really connect with that song. But I connect with many songs, I also really love Induku…they're all my babies I love them all (laughs). They were all written to be performed."
Simphiwe's rise to household name status was not easy to come by especially in an industry that often gives woman a tough time. About the one thing she wished she had known when she first started out, she said: "I would say that I know now that some of the opportunities that I really want to do are hard to come by because I am a woman. It took me a long time to understand that. I used to struggle with that notion that I'm going to miss opportunities despite my talent, only because I'm a woman. It struck me hard, because I never used to look at myself like that. I saw myself as an artist first. I had all of these big dreams. And then I realised all of these doors are closing in my face because I'm a woman. It was hard to get things off the ground and then I realised that some people aren't listening to me, because I'm a woman. That took me a really long time to understand. Even with my band – I used to struggle to give instruction because there was this man – it took me many years to understand (pause) to truly understand what was happening. It was a lightbulb moment for me. I thought it was always something that happened to other people and not to me."
Does she think it's changed? "I don't think so at all. There's no evidence of that, let's say that."
SIMPHIWE DANA’S ANNUAL CONGREGATION EVENT DETAILS:
Date: Saturday, 2 March
Venue: The Lyric Theatre, Gold Reef City
Ticket price: From R200