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Friday, September 4, 2020


(Phelelani Mnomiya)

Well-known Durban tenor group, I Grandi Tenori, mourns the untimely death on August 31, 2020, of the legendary composer and conductor, Simon Phelelani Mnomiya.

Born in 1960 in Empangeni and receiving his early education at Emkhandlwini near Melmoth, Mnomiya was a former music lecturer at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN). He is acknowledged as one of the top South African choral composers. Among the famous works he composed is Yekela Amathwasa Angene. He composed works such as Ihele, Zizi Lethu, a work that celebrates the life of Thabo Mbeki, Igqayizivele, Ngiboniseleni, Umama and Amadlelo Aluhlaza.

“Mr Mnomiya's positive influence remains remarkable in the development and transformation, predominantly the choral sector. During the inception of the Let Me Sing Schools Solo Opera back in the year 2017, Baba Mnomiya with much gratification opened his richest library and offered some of his greatest compositions for the benefit of societal upliftment, says Kwazi Mhlongo, the founder and director of I Grandi Tenori.

“An epitome of choral fraternity, a great teacher, mentor, music-intellect and a composer today asks for a break and gives us all a baton to run.

“We join the nation in praying for the eternal repose of his soul. We humbly extend our heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family, friends, mentees and the entire fraternity,” Mhlongo adds.