Veteran musician Elelwani Julia Nemakhavhani has been nominated for a SATMA award. Photo supplied.

Legendary Julia Nemakhavhani nominated for SATMA


Veteran musician Elelwani Julia Nemakhavhani from Makwarani, outside Thohoyandou, has been nominated for the Best Tshivenda Artist/Group award at the 2023 South African Traditional Music Awards (SATMA) for her song “Dambila”. The upcoming awards are to be held in Durban on 15 December.

Nemakhavhani’s nomination did not come as a surprise to many, as her latest album, “Tshipure Maranga”, once again set the Tshivenda music scene ablaze.

The 67-year-old musician was in high spirits over her nomination. She said she felt humbled but at the same time confident that she would bring the award home. “I thought the sun had set on me musically. I never thought I would be considered for this prestigious award. I am highly motivated now and very confident that, through your votes, I will bring the award home. This will be the highlight of my music career as it will be my first award ever. Just to be nominated for this award is such a great achievement and a dream come true for me,” she said.

Born with music in her blood, Nemakhavhani, who is the leader of a traditional dance group called Sialala a li Ngafi, is considered a legend in local music circles, famous for being one of the greatest malende dancers of our time.

Only in 2020 did she and her band, Zwiakonadzea, record her first Tshivenda album, titled “Tangulani”. That was when she realised she still had something fresh to offer Tshivenda music lovers. The album was followed by “Tshipure Maranga”, which was released earlier this year.

Apart from her music, Nemakhavhani possesses great knowledge of cultural matters She is also a motivational speaker and a high-ranking member of the United African Apostolic Church (under IJ Miriri’s section).


Entertainment - Date: 06 October 2023

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Elmon Tshikhudo

Elmon Tshikhudo started off as a photographer. He developed an interest in writing and started submitting articles to local as well as national publications. He became part of the Limpopo Mirror family in 2005 and was a permanent part of the news team until 2019.