The Standard Bank Jazz Festival enters its second half with great jazz performances and unmissable cultural experiences on offer at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown.
Jazz lovers are in for a treat when 2016 Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz Nduduzo Makhathini presents music from his latest album, Ikhambi with One-Voice Vocal Ensemble. The enterprising composer and pianist is fresh off a short series of gigs in London at the British Academy and his Best Jazz Album win at the SAMAs. Makhathini goes on stage with Swiss vocalists Julie Fahrer and Lisette Spinnler alongside his longtime collaborators, singer Omagugu Makhathini and Linda Sikhakhane on sax, bassist Nhlanhla Radebe and Ayanda Sikade on drums at the DSG Hall, on 5 July.
In one of the most anticipated performances on the SA’s contemporary jazz calendar this year, saxophonist McCoy Mrubata and pianist, Paul Hanmer will celebrate 30 years of collaboration. The two have shared and enjoyed a long and fruitful friendship and productive musical partnership. It is this jazzman’s camaraderie that they will be celebrating at the DSG Hall on Friday 6 July.
There’s reason Vusi Mahlasela has been affectionately nicknamed The Voice. Mahlasela has built an international reputation with visceral sounds and uplifting music that go to the hearts of his diverse and loyal audiences. He’s at DSG Hall on Friday 6 and Saturday 7 July.
World Afrobeat composer and performer, versatile saxophonist and dynamic vocalist Femi Koya is the new face of the African Renaissance. Combining West African Highlife and Jazz plus South African Sofiatown with nostalgic Afrobeat roots, his music delivers a rich blend of deep and sultry sounds. He’s at DSG Hall on Friday 6 and Saturday 7 July.
The fresh new voice on South Africa’s musical landscape, Amanda Black, is poised to give the performance of her life with her first ever show at Jazztown. A truly Eastern Cape product, she was born in Mthatha and raised in Butterworth and Port Elizabeth before moving to Johannesburg when her star began to rise. She’s on the Guy Butler Theatre, Monument on Friday 6 and Saturday 7 July.
The festival will also present Afropoets, a unique musical night that collects extraordinary musical and artistic talent on one stage. This two-hour long treat will feature fresh sounds of urban folk music of the legendary “King of the Zulu Guitar”, Madala Kunene, The Brother Moves On, a South African performance art ensemble; and the new face of Afro-Folk, Bongeziwe Mabandla, who is effortlessly able to entwine Xhosa lyricism into fresh folk stylings to create something uniquely captivating. Afropoets is at the Guy Butler Theatre, Monument on Friday 6 July 22:00