Im Interview mit Nomfusi Gotyana, Sängerin aus dem südafrikanischen Port Elizabeth
(Autor/ Editor: Ghassan Abid)
Nomfusi Gotyana hat es geschafft, der Armut zu entkommen. Sie wuchs in ärmlichen Verhältnissen auf, erlebte aber viel Liebe innerhalb ihrer Familie. Mit der Musik hat sie sich eine Existenz geschaffen, inspiriert vom Leben Miriam Makebas und Nelson Mandelas. Die Südafrikanerin ist stolz auf ihre Herkunft, weiß jedoch, dass viele Dinge am Kap noch bewerkstelligt werden müssen. Egoismus, Machtkonzentration und Habgier der politischen Klasse erschweren den Wohlstand für die Gesellschaft. Als Protagonistin im Film „Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom“ ging ihr Gesicht weltweit um die Welt. Bildung sei, so Gotyana in Anlehnung an Mandela, das Mittel zur Armutsbekämpfung. Mit Deutschland, ihrer zweiten Heimat, verbindet sie eine besondere Beziehung. Einerseits schätzt sie ihre tanzbegeisterten Fans, andererseits ist die Veröffentlichung ihres dritten und zugleich ersten internationalen Albums mit einem Münchner Produzenten im Frühjahr 2015 geplant. Gotyana singt in ihrer Heimatsprache isiXhosa und Englisch. Im neuen Jahr wird sie erneut in Deutschland auftreten und womöglich auch nach Berlin kommen.
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: We would like to welcome on „SÜDAFRIKA – Land der Kontraste“ – the German Gateway to South Africa – the in Port Elizabeth born musician Nomfusi Gotyana. Your childhood in a township was very difficult. You mum died of AIDS and your dad was jailed in prison. Where have you took your strength?
Answer: My mother taught me love and respect for myself. Besides my Dad being in prison I grew up very protected. We were poor but there was a lot of love in the house.
After my mothers dead I stayed with my aunt for two years who also than died of HIV – at this point I understood I needed to leave this place and went to Cape Town to live with my brother. I think to love yourself is the most important thing and it gave me the strength to overcome anything that would put me down.
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: When and for which reason have you started with singing?
Answer: I grew up in a very musical home where my mother always played music and we sang along. She was a Sangoma, a traditional healer, and I campaigned her to the rituals where I would beat the drum and dance. Due to my culture music is always an important part of it.
Professionally, I started in 2008 after I was working in a restaurant where the waiters serve food and sing to entertain the guests. My best tips I got from singing, as I was a bad waitress.
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: South Africa´s most famous artist is Miriam Makeba, well known als Mama Africa, who died in 2008. You are still singing her song „Pata Pata“. What does it mean for you to perform her unique music onstage?
Answer: Due to great artists like Mama Miriam Makeba, we young artists have a platform to perform today. She brought the music into the world outside of South Africa and made it popular. So she paved the road for all South African artists and opened to door to us. She is a legend and was a huge role model. To perform her songs is great fun and I love to continue to tell her stories. Miriam and my mother were both Sangomas and I feel very connected to her.
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: In the movie „Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom“ you played the role of Makeba. Do you think that the spirit of Nelson Mandela is still perceptible in South Africa in 2014?
Answer: Madiba´s spirit, values, energy and efforts made South Africa to the place it is today. The world needs more humans like him. Unfortunately, by today we have not managed to solve all problems and I feel the spirit of Mandela is fading a bit. That is the problem when people are too much driven by power, greed and their own interests. But South Africa is a very beautiful country with a lot of opportunities and we need to take the action our self and not to wait that others do it for us. The young generation of South Africa is the future and the best we can do is to give them education and guidance. As Nelson Mandela said: „Education is the I strongest weapon against poverty“.
I wrote and dedicated one song for Mandela in my new album called „My hero“ to always bring him back in peoples mind. To me he was not a saint but he introduced something very powerful to us which is forgiveness where I feel we humans struggle a lot with. And it is not only to forgive others – we need also to forgive ourselves to find peace and then to be able to forgive others. With this song I want to remind and bring awareness of this powerful mind set forgiveness.
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: In September 2014, you performed in several cities in Germany and Austria. How important is the German-speaking audience for you?
Answer: I love the German audience. Germany had become a second home for me I have to say. When I come to Europe I mostly stay here. I am always overwhelmed by the love which I experience from my fans and audience and they seem to be crazy for African music which is great. In general I feel that the Germans love music and dancing. They enjoy it a lot. They are very warm people when you get to know them. Totally different to the image they have.
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: You are singing in isiXhosa. Why not in English or in other South African languages?
Answer: Xhosa is my mother language so I am very comfortable in this language but I do also sing in English. My new album will be mostly in English.
Nomfusi Gotyana auf Deutschland-Tour 2014
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Which new projects are you planning and when will you come back to Germany and to make a visit in Berlin?
Answer: I am busy recording and finishing my 3rd album and it will be my first album to be release internationally. For this I am working with a German producer Mr Reitinger from Munich. It will come out in Spring around March /April.
Than I will be touring in May 2015 to present my new album and I hope to visit Berlin with this tour as well. In any case I will come to Berlin as I just signed a publishing deal with BMG Media rights who are based in Berlin.
For all concert dates you can follow me on my website and Facebook. www.nomfusi.com https://www.facebook.com/biglittlediva
2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Nomfusi Gotyana, passionate South African musician, thanks a lot for this interview.