South African composers: five of the best

South Africa's five leading composers

Composer Clare Loveday

Neo Muyanga


As a composer and librettist, Muyanga is an important voice in South African opera. His operetta The Flower of Shembe illustrates a Pan-African musical idiom, merging his own roots with influences from greater Africa.

Clare Loveday

Loveday is a composer at the forefront of advocacy for women in South African music. Particularly known for her saxophone works, her music is often performed in the UK.

Andile Khumalo

As a student of George Lewis and Tristan Murail, Khumalo is predominantly a spectral composer. He has been featured in South African and international festivals, including the Festival d’Automne.

Amy Crankshaw

Crankshaw is a London-based composer, pianist and French horn player, and was composer-in-residence for the London City Orchestra’s 2016 Summer term, during which the LCO premiered her work Paper Bird.

Cara Stacey

The composer has a strong presence in the UK ethno-experimental scene. Stacey merges her Western piano background with African instruments, which she studied with Dizo Plaatjies (a relative of Lungiswa Plaatjies).