Beyoncé Writes To Nelson Mandela: “Your Sacrifices Were Not In Vain”
Grow Talk by Sofy Robertson
Beyoncé is honouring the late Nelson Mandela with a powerful open letter ahead of her performance at a festival which celebrates the former South African president next month.
Alongside her husband Jay-Z, Beyoncé is set to appear at the Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100 in Johannesburg, South Africa. The festival, taking place on December 2nd, will mark Mandela’s legacy and the 100th anniversary of the anti-apartheid leader’s birth.
In a letter titled “Dear Madiba” (Mandela’s clan name), Beyoncé explains how the lessons she took away from her 2004 meeting with Mandela have become guiding forces in her own life.
The singer first met Mandela at an AIDS Benefit Concert in Cape Town and joined him on a visit to Robben Island, the place where he was imprisoned for eighteen years before the fall of apartheid.
“I recall your measured but focused steps in as you recounted the stories of the struggles, the sacrifices and your resilience. In that moment I truly understood your heart and humility.” (Huffington Post)
Joining Beyoncé for the concert are singers Usher, Ed Sheeran, Kacey Musgraves, Pharell, Wizkid and Femi Kuti. Oprah Winfrey will deliver the festival’s keynote address.
Beyoncé’s emotive letter made clear the impact that Mandela has had on her, and so many others’ lives, writing:
“I promise you that we have made your dreams our own.
“Your work and your sacrifices were not in vain. I will cherish every moment shared in your presence and use the lessons learned from you as fuel to stir positive ideas and solutions.”
The festival is hosted by Motsepe Foundation, which aims to bring an end to poverty through education and job creation.
Beyoncé’s full letter can be read here.