Botlhale Boikanyo is a spoken word artist and won SA’s Got Talent in 2012. At the age of thirteen she performed her poems at the Legacy of Hope Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital campaign inauguration in New York and her request and performance was linked with International Mandela Day.
Botlhale was not merely a representative for her country at this historic event, but also officially joined a collection of honorary committee members; Dr Maya Angelou, Whoopi Goldberg, Sir Anthony Hopkins and Charlize Theron, among several others. The young Boikanyo’s message led her to the recording of Africa my Pride, a spoken word piece, which was turned into music by Malambule from Native Rhythms Productions.
The Legacy of Hope Foundation and merger of non-profit organisations came together to realize Nelson Mandela’s dream for the world-class children’s hospital in South Africa. Botlhale is the organisation’s fledging ambassador and will give special meaning to the show and attendees as well as present a global day of action and crowd-fundraising movement for actor Edward Norton’s CrowdRise.
At age eleven she appeared on SA’s Got Talent and won in October as a poet. Her performance included Marianne Williamson’s famous poem and then recited something original. The young talent elevated the bar for Aspirant poets.
“E-TV’s SA's Got Talent show 2012 winner, Botlhale Boikanyo, has not only heightened expectations across the country but has unquestionably claimed the status of the North West Province as home of gifted artists” Premier Thandi Modise said in congratulating the 11 year old, for scooping the coveted R250 000 prize on the finals night.
"Botlhale is a jewel that we should nurture for the world stage because the world is her oyster. Her passion, talent, inspirational poetry, self-confidence and with which she performed before millions who watched the talent search show distinguished her as a professional in the making destined for greater heights. She really did us proud. The sky is the limit for her. The provincial government will do everything possible to support her to achieve her dreams." said the overjoyed Premier Modise.
The celebrated Botlhale thanks all her viewers who voted for her, salutes her single mother for teaching her to believe in herself and for encouraging her to reach for the sky.
Botlhale is from Imperial Reserve in Mahikeng and won herself thousands of admirers. All of whom ensured that the young talent made it into the finals and contested against the beat boxers, Drumkit and Evo; the tap dancers, T Squared; singers, Melanie Adams and Iziqhaza and the owner-and-dog act acted out by Xandre and Finn, in the semi-finals.
Her performance fetched a standing ovation from the audience as well as judges in the semi-finals and finals. She fetched such a level of emotion for her performance that one judge, Shado Twala, openly cried in admiration for the young poet’s gift.
Botlhale was born in Mafikeng and eldest of three children. Her attitude towards life is that education + Jesus = success. She is also a fellow of Mmabana Arts, Culture and Sport Club and has always found herself in leadership positions. She aspires to be like Lebo Mashile. This girl is well on her way.
Botlhale entered the SA’s Got Talent competition after seeing an advert and knew this was her chance. It was a journey filled with mixed emotions at times due to high stress and excitement. The thought of being crowned the winner of the competition was always on her mind and her driving-force throughout the journey.
Happiness and a sense of great achievement swept over her after winning the competition and commented that growing up in Mafikeng was a humbling experience. She was a child raised by the village and community as a whole, a place where every elder was a parent and she feels that she made each of them proud. It was these elders, her several parents, that taught her the deep value of respect and is evident in her work.
Following an amazing response from a small audience, after reciting a poem, she realised that this is what she was born to do. Her aspirations have since grown to be an entrepreneur and actor in addition to being a poet. In spite of her success and aspirations she still finds time to be a child by doing what she loves, reading, playing with friends and dancing.
Her strong faith in God has brought her to believe that nothing is impossible. Her belief and natural enthusiasm, which she attributes from her good genes, has everyone expecting great things. She commented that there is a whole lot more than what fans have seen. Watch this space because she’s on her way.