It is my honour to receive an award on behalf of my late mother, Princess
Magogo kaDinuzulu, in recognition of her contribution to the world of music.
I shall not say we honour her contribution to South African Music, or to the
music of the Zulu nation; for what my mother gave through her exceptional
gift, she gave to the world. The themes of her compositions were universal,
and her voice and her music refused boundaries.
I wish to thank the South African Music Rights Organisation for honouring
Princess Magogo during this milestone Awards Ceremony. As SAMRO celebrates
its 50th anniversary, we remember the individuals who have made a difference
to this Organisation's growth and success. Between Dr Gideon Roos Senior and
Mr Nicholas Motsatse lies a legacy built with many hands.
I am proud to know that my mother was among those who built this legacy.
Princess Magogo kaDinuzulu was born at the turn of the century during the
Anglo-Boer War, after her father, King Dinuzulu, returned from exile. During
the reign of her brother, King Solomon kaDinuzulu, the King asked her to
marry his traditional Prime Minister, Inkosi Mathole Buthelezi.
Music always defined my mother. According to Zulu custom, on the second day
after my parents' wedding, my mother's people sat with my father's people to
disclose the state of her health. My mother, they said, was in perfect
health - except for one small quirk; she could not stop singing!
In her lifetime, Princess Magogo became a revered musician and composer. She
played some Zulu instruments, such as Ugubhu, as well as the autoharp and
piano. She sang Umbhaqanga, love songs, and favoured the Psalms of David,
which she set to music. She could recite many of David's Psalms word for
word in isiZulu.
After her death, Opera Africa commissioned Professor Mzilikazi Khumalo to
compose the first full length African opera, based on my mother's life. That
opera, "Princess Magogo kaDinuzulu", has now been performed throughout the
world. President Thabo Mbeki also bestowed on her the Ikamanga National
Award (Gold Class) for her contribution to music.
I am blessed to have recordings of my mother singing and playing the Ugubhu.
It is a haunting sound that still calms me and reminds me of her love. I am
also delighted that one of Princess Magogo's great granddaughters has
inherited her talent and is now making a name for herself in her right, as
Music is part of my family, and as such we are called on to support
institutions like SAMRO for the vital work they do for composers, musicians,
singers and the music industry. By serving our artists, SAMRO serves our
country. I therefore congratulate SAMRO on its 50th anniversary and thank
you again for recognising my mother's contribution through this award.
In honour of Princess Magogo ka Dinuzulu, who was blessed with a long life
and a great talent, I quote from her favourite Psalm - Psalm 91 verses 14 to
16 - "Ngenxa yokuba enamathele kimi, ngakho ngiyamkhulula; ngiyamphakamisa
ngokuba elazi igama lami. Uyakungibiza, ngimphendule; ngiyakuba naye
esosizini, ngimkhulule, ngimdumise. Ngiyakumsuthisa ngobude bezinsuku,
ngimbonise insindiso yami."
I thank you.