Celebrating A Decade of Amapiano with Spotify, here are five people continually pushing the scene's boundaries and taking the genre to new stratospheres.

It may not feel like it, but 2024 marks a decade of Amapiano. Since the dance-focused subgenre burst out of South African parties and into the mainstream, it has become completely unavoidable, infiltrating charts, music festivals and club nights worldwide.


Blending kwaito, Bacardi house and jazz, infectious beats and soulful melodies, the genre’s surge in popularity has been charted by its increase in streams. On Spotify, the genre has amassed over 1.4 billion streams, marking a monumental achievement in its relatively short history.


To celebrate such a landmark moment for the genre, this month, Spotify launched A Decade of Amapiano, which coincides with South Africa’s Youth Day on June 16, paying tribute to the country’s impact on the cultural zeitgeist.


If you don’t know where to start on your quest to discover more about Amapiano, here are 5 boundary-pushing people taking the scene to dizzy new heights.

Thulani Keupilwe

Thulani Keupilwe, known as Thuli, founded Lawk Communications, a trailblazing force in artist management. Starting as an intern at Dreamteam South Africa and later assisting Khuli Chana at Homecoming Events, Thuli’s work at Proud Africa inspired her to launch Lawk Communications in 2017. Managing top artists such as DJ Maphorisa, Kabza De Small, and Sha Sha, Thuli’s visionary leadership redefines artist management in South Africa. Passionate about the industry’s future, she continues to shape careers and elevate the music scene both locally and internationally.

Reba Shai

Reba Shai is a celebrated figure in the music industry, managing global Amapiano sensation Focalistic and leading marketing at the independent label 18 Area. Beginning as Label Manager at CapcCity Records, she worked with artists like Lady Zamar and Junior Taurus before consulting for global labels like SONY. Reba’s expertise shapes iconic cultural events such as Focalistic’s Strata Nation Address, attended by 15,000 fans. As GQ Artist Manager of the Year in 2022, she influences South Africa’s music scene, mentoring emerging Amapiano talents and collaborating with brands like Jägermeister, adidas, and Coca-Cola.

Bontle Modiselle

Bontle Modiselle is a prominent figure in South Africa’s Amapiano scene, celebrated for her prowess as a dancer, choreographer, and media personality. Starting her career with a passion for dance, Bontle quickly gained recognition for her dynamic performances and choreography skills. She seamlessly integrates Amapiano’s infectious rhythms into her work, bridging dance and mainstream music culture. Her collaborations with Amapiano artists and performances at major events highlight her impact and contribution to the genre’s evolution, showcasing her versatility and creativity on a global stage.

Nasaa Reloaded

Nasaa Reloaded is a dancer and artist from South Africa, recognised for her significant contributions to the Amapiano music genre. Known for her unique style and production skills, Nasaa has gained prominence in the South African music scene by crafting tracks with captivating melodies and infectious beats that resonate deeply with audiences. Hailed by mentor and fellow dancer Bontle Modiselle as ‘the next best thing’ in the genre, Nasaa continues to shape and advance Amapiano music, engaging actively with fans and collaborators to drive the genre’s vibrant evolution.

Phiona Okumu

Phiona Okumu is Spotify’s Head of Music in Sub Saharan Africa, renowned for her pivotal role in promoting Amapiano music globally. With a background in music journalism, Phiona champions African music genres at Spotify, curating playlists and supporting artists who have shaped Amapiano’s rise. Her efforts significantly enhance Amapiano’s visibility and influence on the international stage, solidifying its position as a dynamic force in contemporary music.