Born to Perform's 'SHINE!' shows SA's has no shortage of future stars

Though the talented cast of The Teatro's latest musical are school children - this is no ordinary school concert

13 September 2019 - 13:35 By Sanet Oberholzer
Xae Memela - who competed in 'Idols SA' season 14 - leads a group of talented youngsters during a number from Born To Perform's show 'SHINE!'.
Xae Memela - who competed in 'Idols SA' season 14 - leads a group of talented youngsters during a number from Born To Perform's show 'SHINE!'.
Image: Alaister Russell/The Sunday Times

With plenty of bad news going around, once in a while it is refreshing to hear about something light-hearted and positive, and a youth music spectacular for the whole family might just do the trick.

The children from Born to Perform are ready to grace the stage of The Teatro @ Montecasino after months of hard work. Their show, SHINE!, features a spectrum of musical and choreographic styles that will take the audience on a journey from pop to hip-hop, ballet to rock 'n roll and even opera.

The production gives young performers from schools around Johannesburg the opportunity to shine onstage and offers a platform for the young artists to work alongside seasoned professionals as they gain experience in performing arts.

Zinah Msimang, the MC of the show, says the performance speaks to the position SA as a country finds itself in.

"We really are breaking the boundaries when it comes to this show. The audience can expect an emotional rollercoaster of feeling and transformation," says Msimang.

"This show shines a light on kids. It highlights different personalities and lives that children lead."

Morgan Beesley - who competed in 'The Voice SA' - sings 'Queen of the Night' during a performance of Born to Perform's show, 'SHINE!'.
Morgan Beesley - who competed in 'The Voice SA' - sings 'Queen of the Night' during a performance of Born to Perform's show, 'SHINE!'.
Image: Alaister Russell/The Sunday Times

The producing and creative partner of the show, Bryan Schimmel, says SHINE! was originally developed as a transformational performing arts experience for over 400 young people ranging from age 8 to 23. It was originally staged at The Lyric at Gold Reef City  in 2018.

"The production delivered on massive entertainment value and had a profoundly emotional effect on the audiences who came to see it, so much so that Montecasino asked us to reproduce it for the Teatro," Schimmel adds.

This year’s performance will include talents from Fourways High School, Mondeor High School, Curro Aurora – Sundowner and St Vincent School for the Deaf, as well as the New Generation Pantsula Dancers from Alexandra.

The audience will also be treated to performances by The Voice SA winner Craig Lucas and finalist Thembeka Mnguni.

But just because it's a production involving school children doesn't mean it's your ordinary school concert. "The show is so special because the kids are so professional," says Msimang. "They have had training. They are kids who have done Sound of Music and Annie."

Born to Perform is a platform that gives the young children involved an opportunity for self-development and personal growth. For many of the cast members, their involvement in the performing arts gives them a coping mechanism to rise above their personal struggles with many of them coming from underprivileged backgrounds.

The Born to Perform 'SHINE!' cast will be putting on four shows at the Teatro @ Montecasino in Johannesburg from September 13 to 15. Tickets can be booked online at tsogosun.com/montecasino or through Computicket.


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