Now in his second year in the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, South African bass Msimelelo Mbali will make his Met debut this season in the Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess. He is a 2019–20 alumnus of the National Opera Studio in London. During his time at English National Opera (ENO), he was a part of the award-winning cast of Porgy and Bess, as well as the 2018 performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem at the London Coliseum. In January 2019, he joined Dutch National Opera in their production of Porgy and Bess.
In 2018, he was awarded the Baroque Prize by the Umculo Music Incubator at the Voices of South Africa International Opera Singing Competition, and in 2017, he qualified for the final rounds of the Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition, held in Moscow. At the Belvedere Competition, he was one of only four South African singers, and he was the first South African bass to qualify in the history of the competition. That same year, he also qualified for the final rounds of yet another of South Africa’s renowned singing competitions, the ATKV Muziqanto National Classical Vocal Competition.
Recent roles include Plutone in Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo and the Second Elder in Handel’s Susanna at Opera North and Don Alfonso in Mozart’s Così fan tutte and Collatinus in Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia at Welsh National Opera.