South African soprano Magdalene Minnaar has entertained audiences across the globe with her versatile voice and enigmatic stage presence, evident in her acclaimed performances of the female lead in the international touring production Show Boat and The Phantom of the Opera, as well as with international superstar Josh Groban on his recent tour in South Africa. A recent Kyknet Fiesta and Fleur du Cap nominee and SAMA winner, Magdalene has won numerous awards and prizes including the Mimi Coertse Bursary Competition (winner), the UNISA Voice Competition (song prize), a Kanna Award as part of the South African Sopranos (Best Classical Production) and also the prize as Best Overall Production at this year’s Clover Aardklop for the opera Poskantoor which Magdalene produced as well as singing the lead role.
After receiving her Honours degree in Music with distinction from the College of Music at the University of Cape Town, she was accepted into the prestigious Cape Town Opera Studio where she performed and studied many roles, including Gilda (Rigoletto), Zerlina (Don Giovanni) and understudy of the Queen of the Night in William Kentridge’s celebrated version of The Magic Flute. In 2009 she was awarded a WBHO bursary for overseas study, which lead her to the New
York Opera Studio where she furthered her studies. Highlights of her subsequent career as opera singer include the opening of the Cape Town Stadium, RMB Starlight Classics, Sean Bovim’s Queen at the Ballet and SuperSkouspel in 2015.
Hailed a “musical rebel” by the press, she has collaborated widely across genres, working with internationally acclaimed producers and musicians, including an operatic electronic collaboration with her brother Louis, entitled MiNNAAR.
In 2010 Magdalene started Biblioteek Productions, which provides a platform for artists of all walks to collaborate on theatrical music productions and conceptual Classical concerts. These projects include the acclaimed Afrikaans opera Poskantoor and Waansin often being labeled as “Ground-breaking work”. Apart from starting four new acclaimed concert series’ (In The Dark, Little Maestros Classical Concerts for Parents & Tots, Co/Mission), it is with Biblioteek that
Magdalene had made her directing debut in 2011, following her lifetime passion of creating beautiful and inspiring theatre. She will be co-directing Cape Town Opera’s Orfeo later this year, and a new international musical in 2017.