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Christine Mansour:

 

Unplugged

 

The Art…The Music…The Love…The Woman.

 

 

I

f Christine Mansour was a cup of coffee, she’d be a rhythmic blend of espresso Arabica and cocoa velvet - with a cheeky shot of Grappa, and a Baklava to go. There’s no denying the pure gusto that brews from this socially acclaimed vocalist. Her perpetual love affair with music has stretched far beyond the borders of Africa, leaving behind passion and purpose in the hearts of all those that have come to hear her sing. 

 

“After  silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible, is music” - Aldous Huxley

 

It was 1978, when the songstress was born third daughter to the humble Mansour household, living in Johannesburg, South Africa. Christine’s addition to the family was a welcome one by her parents, neither of whom anticipated the waterfall of melody that would, in just a few years, spring from their daughter’s lips.

 

At the early age of seven, Christine had her sights set on the microphone. Her child-like confidence set the stage for a musical sensation, which saw her performing at school functions and stealing the show at a number of singing competitions. And so the love affair began, between Christine and her music. She lived to sing; to sing with soul; to bring an indescribable joy to her audience.       

 

 

“Does anybody really think that they didn't get what they had because they didn't have the talent or the strength or the endurance or the commitment?”

- Nelson Mandela

 

 

 

Her voice grew into a kaleidoscope of keys, shading her performances with an emotive colour that mesmerized her audience. She was praised for her strength of sound. At just sixteen years old, Christine was trained only with breathing techniques, as musical experts were already satisfied with her vocal ability. Her training equipped her with adequate theoretical knowledge, which enhanced her musical attributes, resulting in explosive performances that chilled and thrilled her listeners time and time again.  

 

Christine’s voice talents have flown her across the seas, to exotic destinations like Spain, Croatia, Greece, Egypt - to name but a few - where clients have requested her personally to perform. Reference to this includes her encore performance in her home country, South Africa, in 2010 for the Prince of Saudi Arabia, which proved no exception to her gifted ability.         

 

“To have another language is to possess a second soul”
- Charlemagne

 

Christine’s crush on travel and people has developed into a marriage of diverse cultural talent with her extensive ability to perform in 11 different languages. These include: English, Greek, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Arabic, Turkish, Moroccan, Neapolitian and German. There’s just no stopping the cultural-centric vocalist, who holds the flame of dedication and ambition deep in her soul.  

 

As a spirited individual, who believes in the power of perseverance, Christine took her singing career to international waters, in 2000 until 2003, as an esteemed Cabaret Artist. She performed onboard a fleet of up-market Starlight Cruise Liners. These included the MSC Monterrey, the Olympia Countess Piraeus Greece Luxury Cruise liner and The Melody MSC.

It wasn’t long before Christine’s stage got a whole lot bigger. In 2005 Christine and critically-acclaimed, South African radio personality, Harry Sideropoulos, joined forces to bring a melodic Mecca to the Johannesburg Civic Theatre, in the popular musical, “Songs from the Mediterranean”. This production drew theatre-going audiences across the country.

Christine also had the privilege of working with great choreographers like Carlo Spettu and Harold Van Buuren. Her continuous exposure to great artists on the arts and culture circuit increased Christine’s appetite for success, resulting in her second album release, in February 2006, produced and written by South African recording artist, Kreesan.


“It always seems impossible until it’s done” –

Nelson Mandela

 

The airwaves soon picked up on the songstress’s charismatic energy. Regional radio stations like Highveld Stereo, Jacaranda, Ofm, Classic FM and Radio Today began to spice things up with the husky decibels of the all new singing wander, Christine Mansour.  It was her unique re-creation of the originally produced song, “It finally happened to me” that found its way into the melody banks of South African listeners, churning out a phenomenal airplay demand of six years.

 

The track was also placed on the first South African “Homebru Compilation”: a selection of chart-topping, home-grown hits produced by South African artists, and published by a high-end reputable radio station, Highveld Stereo.

 

"Cooking is like love; it should be entered into with abandon or not at all."
Julia Child

Christine continues to bring the X-factor to everything she puts her heart to. This would include her best-kept secret: cooking. As if her singing talents were not enticing enough, Christine’s love for everything eccentric extends deep into the kitchen. In 1998, she graduated from Varsity College with a Degree in Public Relations and Hotel Management, specializing in the culinary field of cheffing. Christine’s friends and family are well aware that there is never a growling tummy around when she is near.

This would explain her gravitation to the restaurant and hospitality industry from 1999 to 2001 when she was employed first, as a trainee chef at the Grace Hotel in Magaliesburg, following which she joined the classy orchestra of chefs at Avianto Function Venue. Christine also cheffed at Giovanni Italian Restaurant and at the popular wedding venue, Casalinga Restaurant, in Mulderdrift. 

    

Christine has since successfully combined the art of good food with good music with her career history as a Live Performer at some of South Africa’s top restaurants. These include: Villamoura in Sandton; Paros at Cantare Monte Casino and Olive’s Bistro in Bedfordview.

 

“May you live to be 100 and may the last voice you hear be mine”
-
Frank Sinatra

While the world has discovered the hypnotic effects of Christine Mansour, as a brand, the humble artist has since discovered the affects of staying grounded and living her truth, no matter the consequences. Christine is a natural philanthropist, giving of her time and her talents to those less fortunate. She believes in emotional equality; the notion that everyone deserves to be free to love, and to be loved.

 

Her determination to contribute her love to the world around her has lead Christine to support a many non-profit organizations throughout her career:  Gateway Society for the mentally handicapped, SANCA, the Alzheimer’s Association, Return to Roots Foundation, Childline and the Prevention of Rape Against Woman and Children. For a full list of Christine’s charitable contributions click here…    

 

“To do is to be. To be is to do. .. do be do be do.”

- Christine Mansour

 

There’s something intoxicatingly nourishing about the songstress-cum-chef: her passion for the spice of life is undeniably prevalent. She’s tenacious, she’s gutsy, she’s real. She’s all about the fire; the get-up-and-go. She’s the “biz” in Bizzazz and the “raz” in Mattaz.

 

She is that addictive aroma that steams from your coffee cup. And just when you think you’ve had enough…you’ll request her to pour you another.

 

-ends-

 

 

Writer:        Natasha Mansour ©

Date:          30 June 2010