Siya Simanga is a home-grown talented artist who started singing at the age of 4 years old. Siya started music when he joined Bluewater Primary School and joined the junior choir as well as the senior choir throughout his Primary School career. Siya participated in the ATKV and received a Double Gold award singing an Afrikaans song JY JY. He was introduced to the Eastern Cape Junior Children’s Choir in 2009 conducted by Lionel van Zyl (Professor at Nelson Mandela University Music Dept.), he then moved over to the Eastern Cape Children’s Choir in 2010 also headed by Lionel. In 2010 and 2012 he was privileged enough to travel with the choir on a European tour to countries such as Germany, France, Switzerland, Luxembourg and Austria. Lionel also gave Siya various opportunities to wow the European audience with some African solo songs such as Homeless by Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Pata Pata, and Mbube. Siya left Port Elizabeth at the end of 2012 and relocated to Nelspruit Mpumalanga, where he partook in the Eisteddfod in Nelspruit with Nina Terblanche singing Kiss Me by Ed Sheeran as a duet and received a Double Gold award for that performance.
In 2016 Siya returned back to PE and joined Grey High School in 11th grade and was privileged enough to be accepted into the Grey Voices and weeks later was awarded a solo spot for the annual proms event in February 2016 where he sang When We Were Young by Adele accompanied by Mrs. Lyon and The Grey Voice, Siya received his first standing ovation as a solo artist that day. Siya was then asked by Mr. Lyon (HOD of the Music Dept.) to join the orchestra to do a full cover of When We Were Young. Siya was the 3rd Grey Boy and the first singer of colour to have ever sung with the orchestra. He performed When We Were Young as soloist for the first time at the annual Grey Selly Concert at the Feather Market Hall and received further standing ovation on the night, from this moment of the Lyon’s have always been great to Siya and they always ask him every year to perform a solo piece at the Selly Concert and help out with the Grey voices. Siya was awarded Vocalist of the year in his first year at Grey and was also awarded Half-Colours in 2017 for his service to the music department. On the 24 of June 2017, Siya had the opportunity to audition for IATS (International Arts Talent Showcase) at the Opera and received an award for being Overall Top Singer at the audition and was awarded a call-back to audition in Johannesburg for international talent-scout Kim Myers, Casting Director for Tyler Perry Studios Rhavynn Drummer, The Voice former contestant Blaze Johnson just to name a few. Siya received a call-back to attend the Arts Showcase in Orlando Florida in July of 2018 but due to certain financial constraints, Siya was unable to attend. In 2018 Siya received a call from the SA Auditions office informing him that he was one of the few selected artists by Blake Babbitt to audition for a possible scholarship from the New York Film Academy (NYFA). Siya auditioned for a 2-year Conservatory Course in Musical Theatre with 2 songs and 1 monologue for International Recruiting Manager, Director, and Producer Blake Babbitt. Siya received an email weeks later confirming his acceptance at NYFA and was also awarded the highest talent-based scholarship they offer, to the value of $15 000 per annum, the highest amount NYFA has ever offered in South Africa.
Siya went on and took part in a national talent search competition hosted by Old Mutual (On The Money) for rappers and he decided to sing about his experience with money. The competition had national votes throughout the country and he was honoured to have been crowned 2019 OMGWAP WINNER, taking home a recording deal, cash-prizes and experience of performing with South Africa’s most well-known artists (Busiswa, Mlindo the Vocalist, Kwesta daKAR). Siya was also interviewed by MetroFM dj Moflava on the morning breakfast show with Mo, after he had been crowned the winner of 2019.
Siya is an RnB soul/Pop singer, who has a GOAL of being a recording artist, performer and being able to sing any genre. His hopes for the future are to release an album and be able to help another artist and fellow musicians to be heard and be recognized, to show the world how much talent Africa has.