Since having won the last coveted SAMRO Overseas Scholarships competition for vocalists (in the Western Art category) held in 2015, Levy Sekgapane took on Europe in November of the same year where he had resounding success impressing a notoriously difficult-to-please German audience of Krefeld at the Ruhr Valley. Levy said he could not disappoint and had to go beyond expectation and subsequently successfully earned himself a spirited standing ovation on his première evening of Rossini’s Barber of Seville. The sensational South African tenor also won the 2015 Belvedere International Singing Competition for young opera singers held in Amsterdam, following in the steps of Pretty Yende who had won the competition a few years prior.

In 2017, Sekgapane beat hundreds of international vocalists to clinch the 25th Operalia World Opera Competition held in Kazakhstan – considered as one of the world’s most prestigious competitions for opera singers. In 2018, he made it onto the Forbes 30 under 30 list in the category ‘Europe – Art & Culture’ for his contribution to the opera music landscape.

Levy has made quite a name for himself and with many having called him ‘the next best thing’ when he took on Europe, the graduate of the South African College of Music at the University of Cape Town has impressed audiences around the world, having performed in Berlin, Rome, Copenhagen, Munich and Paris in under two years since winning the SAMRO international scholarship.

The phenomenal opera tenor has descended onto South African soil for a spectacular evening at The Teatro at Montecasino on the 3rd of April 2019 as part of ‘Opera Jewels’ together with Mezzo Soprano star, Megan Kahts, and the Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of maestro Kutlwano Masote. It promises to be a night of the absolute best in the world of opera as Levy Sekgapane returns home to share a taste of his enriched musical experiences with his fellow South Africans.

Levy just completed a successful performance as Conte d’Almavia in the Barber of Seville at the National Opera House in Paris and later this year Levy will participate in the Salzburg festival.

The SAMRO overseas scholarship returns this year to give more South African talented singers a chance to conquer the world as did Levy and Zoë Modiga (who won in the Jazz category the same year) in 2015.


  • Be between the ages 20 and 32.
  • Be a final year Music student or young professional musician within Jazz or Western Art

The deadline for submissions is 15 May 2019. The rehearsal and competition will take place during the week of 12 – 17 August 2019 at the Linder auditorium, Johannesburg.

Online Application forms can be found here.

For more information on the SAMRO Foundation, visit, follow @SAMROFoundation on Twitter or “like” the SAMRO Foundation page on Facebook.

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