Otto Nhlapo

My interest in dance began when I was part of Juvenile Development Cultural Group in 2004, specialising in Zulu dance genres Umkhomazi, Isizingili, Ushamen and Umzansi and Pantsula dance. In 2010 I joined Moving Into Dance Mophatong where I had an opportunity to study and perform in various events alongside the likes of Robyn Orlin in her work titled Beauty, which toured 11 cities in France. In 2012 Nhlapo won the pick of the stepping stones Dance Umbrella Festival Johannesburg with his solo work titled Dirty Hands. During my time at MIDM I also performed Transformations choreographed by Sylvia Glasser.

In 2013 I joined Vuyani Dance Theatre as a Junior Dancer and after three months I was promoted to Senior Dancer. Since joining the company I have been touring with the company abroad. We toured countries such as Finland, Germany, Sweden, Holland, China and New York to name a few. I have been part of the team that performed at the Metro FM annual awards 2013 to 2015, sharing the stage with various South African musicians. In 2014, we performed with the company at the Presidential Inauguration.I have performed for dignitaries including President Jacob Zuma, former President Thabo Mbeki and FIFA President Joseph Sepp Blatter.

I have had the privilege to perform in dance works of great choreographers in the country these include Four Seasons, Full Moon, Kudu and Wake Up choreographed by Gregory Vuyani Maqoma. In addition, I performed in works such as Umnikelo, Dominion, Siva and 7Pillars choreographed by Luyanda Sidiya. In 2017 I started touring with Via Katlehong in production titled Via Kanana choreographed by Gregory Maqoma, I choreographed for the song Ndiredi by Simphiwe Dana during the production (Joys of Sharing) presented by Vuyani Dance Theatre, Featuring Wouter Kellerman and Simphiwe Dana, directed by Greg Maqoma.

In the year 2017 I created my first work with the company which was presented at Vuyani Week, the work titled Interpellation. In 2018 my second piece was also staged at Vuyani Week and later at the inauguaral Dance Umbrella Africa. I am currently the Rehearsal Director at Vuyani Dance Theatre and continue to tour as the lead in Gregory Maqoma’s Cion: Requiem of Ravels’s Bolero.