As regular readers will know, the Imogen Heap tour of South Africa was recently called off due to circumstances outside of her control. Heap was due to appear at four Heavy Chef events in Cape Town and Johannesburg during this week and next.
Last night, Heap patched in from her home in Essex via Skype and delivered a seminal keynote to an enthralled audience at Workshop17 at the V&A Waterfront. As Fred Roed introduced Imogen, the audience was delighted as South African music powerhouse Zolani Mahola appeared from behind the stage wielding a guitar.
Zolani proceeded to relay her story from birth, being born to challenging circumstances and living through a challenging time in South Africa’s history during her childhood. Mahola outlined her love for powerful women like Imogen Heap and her idols Brenda Fassie and Winnie Mandela. To the delight of the crowd, Zolani snuck in a song (see video above), which was applauded by Imogen herself, who was watching via the live feed from the venue.
Zolani’s career, like that of Imogen Heap, spans over two decades. As Zolani mentioned in her talk, she began singing with Freshlyground before there were mobile phones everywhere, and internet was the privilege of a lucky few. Times have changed, and we now have to embrace a new reality, but retain the heart and soul of our past.