Dean’s Concert – A Grand Night for Singing

Launched in 2016 in support of a bursary established by Professor Federico Freschi, the Executive Dean of the Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture (FADA), in aid of academically deserving but financially needy students in FADA, this gala concert brings together distinguished musicians and rising stars.

The Dean’s Concert is proudly presented by UJ Arts & Culture (a division of FADA), and will take place at the Art Centre Theatre on the University of Johannesburg’s Kingsway Campus on Saturday, 4 November. In addition to being the Dean of FADA, Prof Freschi is an accomplished baritone, who studied opera at the UCT College of Music, and has sung principal roles in a number of operas, operettas and musicals. He continues a concert career with renowned pianist Christopher Duigan, who will be joining him on stage. They will introduce the other soloists, Cape Town-based soprano Noluvuyiso Mpofu, who is a rising star on the international opera scene, and esteemed Durban-based clarinettist Junnan Sun. The award-winning UJ Choir will also perform, conducted by choirmaster Renette Bouwer.

Christopher Duigan has performed extensively with all major South African orchestras, and has appeared on national and international festivals and stages in a repertoire of more than 25 compositions for piano and orchestra. In recital he has developed a wide national following through his innovative presentation and programming.

Since graduating from the South African College of Music at the University of Cape Town Noluvuyiso Mpofu, who hails from Port Elizabeth, has been making a name for herself as one of South Africa’s most promising sopranos. In 2015, she came third in the prestigious international Operalia competition hosted by Plácido Domingo in London, and last year she won the audience prize at the International Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition.

Junnan Sun is currently the principal clarinettist for the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra. He moved to South Africa with his parents in 2003 and in 2011 he obtained a BMus Hons from the University of Pretoria. He continued his studies at the Royal College of Music (RCM) in London where he obtained a Masters of Performance (specialising in orchestral studies) with distinction.

The Dean’s Concert is free, but audience members are encouraged to make a donation to the Dean’s Bursary Fund in support of deserving students in the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture. The concert will take place on Saturday, 4 November at the Art Centre Theatre at the University of Johannesburg on its Kingsway Campus. Email by no later than 31 October to reserve your seat. Booking is essential.


UJ Arts & Culture, a division of the Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture (FADA) produces and presents world-class student and professional arts programmes aligned to the UJ vision of an international university of choice, anchored in Africa, dynamically shaping the future. A robust range of arts platforms are offered on all four UJ campuses for students, staff, alumni and the general public to experience and engage with emerging and established Pan-African and international artists drawn from the full spectrum of the arts.

In addition to UJ Arts & Culture, FADA ( offers programmes in eight creative disciplines, in Art, Design and Architecture, as well as playing home to the NRF SARChI Chair in South African Art & Visual Culture, and the Visual Identities in Art & Design Research Centre. The Faculty has a strong focus on sustainability and relevance, and engages actively with the dynamism, creativity and diversity of Johannesburg in imagining new approaches to art and design education.