Honoring Nelson Mandela In the Voice of a 13-Year Old - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Honoring Nelson Mandela In the Voice of a 13-Year Old

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Friday, July 18, Nelson Mandela would have been 96 years old. He was honored at the Legacy of Hope concert at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.

Guests enjoyed the setting sun, in the garden reception while drinking champagne and munching on watermelon radishes stuffed with tomato compote. Legacy of Hope is working to raise funds to build South Africa’s first children’s hospital in Mr. Mandela's name. It was Nelson Mandela’s dream. Working to make that dream come true is youth ambassador Botlhale Boikayno. At 11, she won, “South Africa’s Got Talent” competition. Now, 13, she wowed Friday’s crowd with first a reading of Dr. Maya Angelou’s and then a poem of her own.

Her performance was shocking because she’s tiny, but her voice, her movements and her words are so big, they should come from someone much older than her 13 years.

Botlhale stopped by Studio 11 LA over the weekend. There’s no doubt she has the poise of a polished performer, but as the director set up the camera shots, she mugged for the camera and checked out her image, just as a girl as young as she would.

We had only one opportunity to interview Botlhale. She was scheduled to leave Los Angeles on an 8pm flight, Saturday. We asked if she and her mother might postpone the trip a day or two, but Mumsy Boikanyo said, no, she has a test at school and must return to Johannesburg. So, even though, she wasn’t dressed in costume, she stood before our cameras and recited her poem about being a proud African.

To donate to the Legacy Of Hope - Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital, text ‘MANDELA’ to 50555.

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