His Excellency, the Honorable President of South Africa, Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma, mourns the passing of Johan Botha.
Daddy Zuma conveyed his condolences saying Johan Botha was a good ambassador for South Africa abroad.
The South Africa-born internationally acclaimed opera singer died today in Vienna, Austria at the age of 51.
Zuma comforted himself with the fact that Botha will be remembered for his soothing and powerful voice.
Mr president recalled that Botha was heard in various opera theaters and halls around the world.
He was so good the Vienna State Opera made him a Kammersänger which is a title bestowed on distinguished singers of opera and classical music in Austria and Germany, remarked President Zuma.
“Mr Botha was one of our most accomplished and talented opera singers. (He was) …a good ambassador for South Africa abroad.
We wish to convey our heartfelt condolences to his family as well as the arts and culture industry at large. May his soul rest in peace,” Daddy Zuma prayed.
Meanwhile, the Vienna State Opera issued a mourning statement wailing that Johan Botha has left a void behind.
“The Vienna State Opera mourns Kammersänger and honorary member Johan Botha, who died in Vienna this morning after a severe illness.
We are all deeply affected by this loss – Johan Botha left us way too early.
We had been very much looking forward to his return on stage as Calaf, after a serious illness did not allow him to sing ‘his’ Turandot premiere in spring.
Johan Botha was one of the best tenors worldwide…and has always been one of the most important singers of our House. He is leaving a considerable void behind…,” read the statement.
Botha was born on the 19th day of August 1965 in Rustenburg but moved to Europe in 1990.
For more than 20 years, he performed at prestigious opera houses of the world. From the Royal Opera House in London to the Metropolitan Opera in New York, the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, and of course, the Vienna State Opera. Botha performed in them all.