Mourners attend memorial service of the late Peter Nthwane

Musicians and Peter Nthwane's fans gathered at the Sand du Plessis theatre to honour the late artist. PHOTO: FLAXMAN QOOPANE

Many mourners and dignitaries attended the memorial service of the late Peter Nthwane, ballroom and latin American dancer, theatre director, choreographer, vocalist, composer, trumpeter and jazz musician at the Sand du Plessis Theatre in Bloemfontein on 17 November 2016.
Speaker after speaker paid tribute to the multitalented musician. Advocate Tsoarelo Malakoane, HOD of the Free State Department of Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation, said: “I have been sent by the Executive Council and the Honourable Premier of the Free State, Ace Magashule, to pass sincere condolences on behalf of the Executive Council and himself to the family, relatives and friends of the late Nthwane.”
Advocate Malakoane told the mourners that Nthwane’s legacy should be celebrated. “I was so angry when I heard that Peter had perished in this way. I don’t think his life deserved to have been terminated in this manner. I believe he was a loving person. Peter was a human being like everybody else. I went to his house and spoke to his family. Peter was never your Peter alone. Peter belonged to all of us. We needed to share him with you. We thank the family for allowing us to be part of his memorial service and the funeral service.”
Dr Nathan Bagarette, former CEO at Pacofs in Bloemfontein, said: “When Peter Nthwane went on stage, he worked hard. He would perform and entertain his audience. He was passionate, he had energy and he was determined. His music inspired all of us, it had a message. He could take you into a song, into a message that you could understand. He sang from his experiences or from what was happening in his environment. And through his music, he was teaching us about something in life.”
According to Bagarette, Nthwane used to say he was a professional musician and he regarded himself as an international musician. “He did not boast about being an international musician. That is what he wanted to be. Sheer Sound International Music Company provided him with this opportunity as the company is an international one. His Lifetime Achievement Award was not a mistake and it was not an accident; it showed what he had managed to achieve in a short space of time.”
Pulapula Mothibi, former Station Manager at Lesedi FM, said: “Peter Nthwane sang the music that the people liked. He sang his songs in Sesotho, which satisfied music lovers. Peter Nthwane was not only a Free State artist, he was a South African artist. When I was in Mpumalanga, I heard people singing his songs. When I was in Windhoek, Namibia, I heard some Namibians sing his music.”
Khaliso Pitso said: “Peter Nthwane was a dreamer and his greatest dream was to see our actors, dancers, singers, musicians, writers, playwrights, filmmakers, music producers and officials from arts departments working together with the communities of the country and contributing to our democracy.” – Flaxman Qoopane