Chante Van Der Westhuizen
Michael Guillet Award, Royal Academy of Music (2022)
Winner of the Michael Head Prize, Royal Academy of Music (2022)
Winner of the Mable Quick Vocal Competition, South Africa (2021)
Chante van Der Westhuizen is a 23-year-old Soprano from Richard’s Bay, South Africa. She started singing at the age of 5 years old in various choirs and participated in Eisteddfods, music competitions and external examinations in the Western Cape, receiving numerous Cum Laude awards. After completing her matric certificate, she then went on to complete her undergraduate in voice at Stellenbosch University under the tutelage of Minette Du Toit – Pearce. Chante has been involved in various student and local South African opera company productions. She has sung as a chorus member and danced in productions of “Die Fledermaus” and “The Merry Widow” with AGL Opera Company. In 2019, Chante was one of nine soloists chosen from the Stellenbosch Music Department to perform in the biannual Stellenbosch Youth Concerto Festival with the University of Stellenbosch Symphony Orchestra. In 2020 Chante understudied the role of Annina in the Woordfees production of La Traviata and also sang as a chorus member. Chante has also participated in various masterclasses presented by the Music Department of Stellenbosch. In July 2020, Chante was a finalist in the Voices of South Africa International Opera Competition, under 23 years category. Chante has received many awards and bursaries during her undergraduate studies, including the Smallie Scholarship, the Stellenbosch University Merit Award for academic excellence, the Hilda Hendricks Vocal Bursary and she won the prestigious Mable Quick Singing Competition in 2020. Chante debuted as Amore in Gluck’s Orpheo ed Euridice in Stellenbosch one week before moving to England. Chante is currently in her final year of a Master of Arts in Voice at the world-renowned Royal Academy of Music in London, England under Raymond Connell, Iain Ledingham and Chad Vindin. Since starting her studies, she has been awarded the Michel Guillet award as the inaugural recipient and has performed in the Academy’s Spring, Summer and Autumn opera scenes as Lucia in Britten’s "Rape of Lucretia", Nannetta in Verdi’s "Falstaff" and currently as Tytania in Britten’s "A Midsummer Night’s Dream". Chante participated in the Academy’s “Transcending Boarders : Italian Favorites” project, performing at the Italian Cultural Institution in Belgrave Square, London and will singing at the ICI again later this November. In June 2022 she sang at the Royal Festival Hall as a chorus member in Mahler’s third symphony under the baton of world-famous conductor, Semyon Bychkov. Chante has recently placed third in the Isobel Jay Memorial Prize and sang in masterclasses with Nicky Spence at the Royal Academy and with Roberta Alexander at Wigmore Hall. Chante is very passionate about community projects involving music in South Africa and presents master classes and mentoring sessions both online, her alumni university, and at South African community center's to work with underprivileged music students to further their musical education.
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