One of Nagoya’s most well-known foreign residents answers the Proust Questionnaire
Prisca Molotsi is anything if not a well-educated person of the world. A South African citizen who was born in Zambia, Prisca went to boarding school in the UK and matriculated to Kent State University in Ohio where she received a Bsc in Architecture. She followed that up by obtaining an MA in Development at Nanzan University Graduate school. She came to Japan to work as a research fellow at The United Nations Center for Regional Development in Nagoya.
After a career in architecture she presently teaches at High Schools and Universities, sings regularly with a Jazz combo in addition to regular TV appearances on shows such as “Sekai Banzuke” and “Sekai Kurabete Mittaea.”
From 2014 to 2017 she was appointed as the South African Honorary Ambassador of Art and Music. As if that wasn’t enough Prisca also runs “Prisca School” where she offers courses in Gospel Singing and Advanced Business English. She works hard.
On February 19th Prisca will be performing at The Blue Note Nagoya for what is now an annual “Birthday Live” performance, and we highly recommend that you go!
As one of Nagoya’s most well-known entertainers and business people we asked Prisca to answer our version of “The Proust Questionnaire”
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Perfect happiness is having no worries in life, engaging in jobs I love, surrounded by people who love me and whom I love, and sipping a glass of South African Chardonnay.
What is your greatest fear?
I fear for the safety of my son, away at University in Tokyo, but all moms fear that, right? I also fear falling down the stairs of our house. We moved in October, but I still clutch onto the sides of the wall as I descend really slowly. I always breathe a sigh of relief when I get to the bottom. The stairwell has definitely got to be lit. I’m not risking going down a dark flight of stairs!
What historical figure do you most identify with?
I don’t identify with any historical figure. There are certain people I really admire, like Nelson Mandela, but I don’t identify with anyone in particular. I do love some of the old jazz vocalists like Ethel Waters, Dinah Washington, Carmen McRae. Not only were these women beautiful and talented, they were dignified and commanded respect. They wouldn’t hesitate to beat up men who were out of line, yet they still looked like real divas. I think I am a reincarnation of one of those ladies, not so much the singing (I must be modest), but the beating up of unruly men! You do know that I have a first-degree black belt in full contact karate?
Which living person do you most admire?
Without a doubt, Oprah Winfrey! She had to overcome so many obstacles to be where she is today. She opened the doors for women of color, doors that had hitherto been shut to them. She is not only one of the richest women in the world, but she is a talented actress. Watch her in “The Color Purple”, one of my favorite movies of all time. Oprah is also a great philanthropist, helping those in need.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
Oh… sometimes I am an awful procrastinator! But having said that, I must say that I work well under pressure, especially if it involves something creative.
What trait do you most deplore in gaijin?
The only gaijin I deplore are those who disrespect Japan and Japanese, those who think that they are better than Japanese and that the rules here do not apply to them. Ugh!
What is your greatest extravagance?
Clothes! Until October 2018, I rented an apartment specifically for my clothes. I would constantly buy new gowns, shoes, hats, you name it (I rue the day I discovered eBay and Paypal!) When we moved, I had to get rid of so many clothes, no exaggeration, I threw out 227 pairs of shoes, some of them brand new, just over 400 items of clothing, I gave away 26 garbage bags filled with evening gowns. I was still left 13 huge boxes filled with evening dresses and gowns! There are in our storage unit in our garden! People say I should have taken them to a recycle shop, but that would have been too troublesome. I couldn’t believe I had accumulated so many clothes! I have imposed a clothes shopping ban on myself. But if someone wants to buy me something, well, that’s an entirely different thing! I shall accept.
On what occasion do you lie?
When someone has cooked something and it’s awful, say for example boiled turkey, and I don’t want to hurt their feelings! (Sorry Carter)! No seriously, I lie to avoid hurting someone’s feelings. I am not a group person and sometimes I might lie to get out of say, attending a mother’s-of-the-community luncheon, especially if they won’t be serving wine!
What is your favorite journey?
The journey of life! The mistakes I have made have only made me stronger. Through my experiences and through meeting all the people I have met, I am who I am today. Not as rich as I would like to be, but then again, money isn’t everything!
What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Modesty! If you are good at something say you are good at it! I am a darn good singer and performer and I say so. Some people may think that is rather pompous and is a reflection of self love, but we are told to love your brethren as you love yourself. How on earth am I going to love my brethren AND sistren if I don’t first love me?
Which living person do you most despise?
Is this a trick question? Of course Donald Trump!
What is your greatest regret?
That I never saved money when I was young and foolish. I thought that the gravy train during the bubble in Japan would last forever. (Sigh)!
Which talent would you most like to have?
I wish I could sew brilliantly, you know whip out designs and produce drop-dead gorgeous clothing! Think of how much money I would save!
What is your most treasured possession?
My son is not my possession, right? So I will have to say my old photo albums and my late father’s collection of records.
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
I would think that losing a child would be the lowest depth of misery. My friend experienced this last year. She is yet to recover, but can one really recover from something as awful as that? I don’t even want to think about it. I spook myself just thing about it.
What is your most marked characteristic?
My boisterous and energetic approach to life.
What is the quality you most like in a man?
Intelligence! I also love a well-read man who can argue with me. Of course he would have to have some money! Could you just imagine me with a pauper? By the way, I despise stingy men.
What is the quality you most admire in a woman?
Her ability to be mom, cook, cleaner, driver, income earner, all at the same time while looking like she stepped out of a fashion magazine.
What do you most value in your friends?
Loyalty and trust. I cannot stand it when people claim to be your friend, but the moment you step out of the room they talk about you like a dog!
How would you like to die?
Surrounded by loved ones and people singing gospel songs to me, a glass of wine in my hand..
Prisca will perform live on her birthday on February 19, 2019
at Nagoya Blue Note.
The 1st stage opens 17:30 and starts at 18:30
The 2nd stage opens 20:30 and starts 21:15
Admission is ¥6,600 (Members ¥6,300)
Check www.nagoya-bluenote.com for more details.