AFDA alumna Gaone Gee Ditirafalo – Rising up against the odds

News, 17 July 2020

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After graduating from AFDA Cape Town in February 2018 with a BA in Live Performance, Gaone Gee Ditirafalo unfortunately was diagnosed with Lupus disease – a systemic autoimmune disease that occurs when your body's immune system attacks your own tissues and organs. The disease affected her joints, resulting in Gaone not been able to walk on her own and she now depends on a wheelchair and walking frame. 

However, despite this major setback, as well as the COVID – 19 lockdown, Gaone has kept her craft and her dreams alive and released a new single entitled, “Be Hopeful”, now available on Youtube at “The song is about the impact of Lupus disease on my life, but I also want the song to motivate people with the same condition. I want inspire them to never to give up, to be hopeful, and to know that all things will work out one day.” says Gaone. “I also want to raise awareness about Lupus disease, as very few people are aware of it.” 

Gaone was born in Molepolole Village in Botswana where she still resides. Her love for music performance started in her primary school years, where she participated in traditional song and dance competitions. At high school she entered a local music competition called My Star Botswana and was placed third. She then moved on to AFDA Cape Town to pursue her studies to become a music performance artist.    

“I chose to study at AFDA because I wanted to grow as a performing artist. At AFDA I developed my song writing skills, piano playing, planning and organisation of my own shows and how to make business out of music. I also moved out of my comfort zone. I learnt to be proactive and take on challenges, no matter how big, no matter how small.” says Gaone.



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AFDA is registered as the South African School of Motion Picture Medium and Live Performance, and is a private higher education institution which offers higher certificate and degree programmes. It is registered with the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) as a private higher education institution under the the Higher Education Act, 1997. Registration certificate no. 2001/HE07/012. Our programmes are accredited and we participate productively in the ongoing reaccreditation and quality assurance processes of the Council on Higher Education (CHE) and the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) to ensure the quality of our programmes.
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