Posted by: hazelmeda | August 23, 2012

Cool kid: singer Lesedi Dipheko

Photo: Tanyaradzwa Nyamajiyah

When songstress Sibongile Khumalo graces the Great Hall stage on Saturday evening, she will be accompanied by 12 aspiring singers whom she handpicked after a nationwide search. One of them is Wits 3rd year music student Lesedi Dipheko.

How did you react when you found out Sibongile Khumalo had chosen you?

I was shocked. I wasn’t expecting it, given the calibre of people who auditioned: people who had been in the Lion King; people who had done a lot of big things. I am an upcoming jazz singer and I was one of the youngest in the entire group, so it was an honour to be chosen.

What was it like working with Sibongile Khumalo?

We learned a lot of things from her and she is becoming a mentor to us. She was motherly, patient and funny. She would laugh with us when we made mistakes.

When did you know that you wanted to become a singer?

I think in nursery school! (Laughs.) I used to get the lead songs in little plays. I was this little person with a big microphone, and I knew how to hold it, and I knew how to sing. I think I’ve always known. That’s why I went to a music high school, the National School of Arts.

Was it difficult to convince your family to support your decision to pursue a singing career?

It wasn’t a struggle until I finished high school. After that, they started getting worried, because of the stereotype that music doesn’t make money. To satisfy them, I took psychology as a subject for two years. But they grew into it, because I started doing a weekly gig at a hotel in Norwood last year and they saw that they can’t really stop me.

 

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