From Cape Town to Mannheim
2nd of February 2018
Young opera singer, director and postgraduate of the university of Cape Town, Xolane Marmam has travelled far: It has long been his dream to come to Germany and to get a deeper insight in the work of opera directors and to experience first hand how theaters and opera houses are structured in this country. Now his dream has become real:
In his new blog Xolane writes about his experiences in Mannheim:
My journey begun on the 9th January, traveling from South African (Cape Town) to Germany (Mannheim). This journey is led by a strong interest in the developments and work ethics in the Opera of both backgrounds (South African and German). As a young opera singer and upcoming Stage Director from South Africa this is a lifetime experience, where I got to learn how Opera in Germany is interpreted on stages and what is being done differently to how we do things back home. On the 12 January, I got to be welcomed by the Artistic Director (Revival Director), Ms Claudia Plaßwich, who was very kind to show me around the theater, the opera stage, and introduced me to officials at the Opera House, Studio and the Workshop House. She allocated me to my first engagement with the Nationaltheater Mannheim, as an intern Assistant Director to the House Assistant Director, Jakob Seidl, a very kind and down to earth man, who was also welcoming and was ready to show me the ropes. So there, I have arrived at my learning destination and have met with the greatest and the people who are to guide me through the opera venture in Germany.
As it is winter time in Germany, the degrees are very low compared to those of South Africa. The skies are always grey. Outdoors are very cold, but indoors or in transportation, there is warmth. I enjoy very much the company of my Flatmate, who is always showing me around the areas and helps me with the German language. The transportation is so convenient and prompt. There are times to miss home, and singing, but once I get to rehearsals, I get to the creative environment and at those moments, I feel that I belong and forget about my home sickness and career, but focusing more on the learning process. One thing I could advise any South African, planning to travel to Europe (during our economical conditions), is that they should be financially sound and wise in budgeting for any European travel. So far, my stay in this country has been nothing but a very interesting (in good way) living.
Xolane Marmam 29, Opernsänger, Regisseur und Postgraduate Student an der Universität von Cape Town, hat eine aufregende Reise hinter sich: Um sich ein Bild davon machen zu können, wie in Europa und speziell in Deutschland mit dem Erbe der Oper und des Musiktheaters umgegangen wird, ist er an das Nationaltheater Mannheim gekommen. Hier wird er für die nächsten Wochen insbesondere die Neuproduktion von Ernani begleiten.