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Local Jazz Artists and International Musicians Reunite at National Arts Festival

Published on 31 May 2022

2021 Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz, Vuma Levin, will perform two shows at the National Jazz Festival Makhanda

The National Jazz Festival Makhanda once again unites jazz musicians from across the country and the world at SA’s definitive jazz gathering, live at the National Arts Festival. Jazz has always been an essential part of the National Arts Festival and promises to be a big drawcard for audiences who have missed the live experience of jazz. The lockdown years have been particularly hard on musicians who always rely heavily on concerts and gigs, often at festivals, for their livelihoods.

Says National Arts Festival CEO, Monica Newton, “It’s a much-needed reunion for jazz musicians who will once again gather together to jam, collaborate and share. With a big focus on local talent and local jazz excellence, the 35th National Jazz Festival Makhanda has assembled an exciting programme of artists from across SA. Our celebration of jazz this year is bitter-sweet; as musicians once again take to the stage of the Festival to engage with live audiences for the first time in two years, we will also be remembering and celebrating lives lost during the pandemic”

The Jazz Festival also includes an essential programme that is key to the development of professional jazz musicians in South Africa. The National Youth Jazz Festival brings together talented, young musicians from across South Africa and through the programme, some 300 plus young musicians from schools, universities and informal institutions around the country are able to meet and connect with successful and diverse jazz musicians. These young musicians also audition for the National Youth Jazz Band – a springboard that has helped shape the careers of artists like Kesivan Naidoo, Siya Makuzeni, Tutu Puoane and Kyle Shepherd. Many of these musicians in turn mentor younger musicians and so the circle continues.

National Jazz Festival Makhanda curator Alan Webster points out that the programme has a strong line-up of younger jazz artists and, although the headlines are filled with young South African jazz artists, excellent musicians from Switzerland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, Romania, Britain and Spain will be collaborating with them for this very special celebration of jazz.

Here’s a look at the 2022 National Jazz Festival programme:

Queen of Afropop and South African groove

Dubbed “The Groove Queen” by her peers and fans, Krugersdorp-born AusTebza is known for her skill on the bass and vocals. She spent 12 years playing the bass guitar for the renowned Hip Hop Pantsula (HHP), and launched her solo career in 2019. Of her time spent playing in HHP’s band, she says simply, “You may sound good by yourself, but you will always sound better when you are in harmony with others”. AusTebza has performed with the likes of Simphiwe Dana, Bucie, Wouter Kellerman, Proverb, and Laurie Levington and her incredibly successful “Going Home” and subsequent album “Make a Difference” was followed by her latest album “Motheo” in 2021. The album was originally meant to be launched at the Cape Town International Jazz Festival in March 2020, but its release was delayed due to Covid-19. AusTebza is a must-see for fans of Afropop and South African groove.

AusTebza (vocals, bass), Neo Joshua Mabena (sax), Ngwato Mapalakane (guitar), Ntsiki Ntsele (piano), Josiah Musuwo (drums), Lebo Moalusi (vocals), Angel Mboweni (vocals)

DSG Hall
Friday 24 (20:30) & Saturday 25 June (17:00)
70 minutes
R120
Jazz has roots in the Home of Legends

The Eastern Cape has played a critical role in the development of a jazz style that is specifically South African and our country’s jazz history is sprinkled with Eastern Cape jazz stars. The province is still the development ground for many of South Africa’s leading jazz musicians, though most have migrated to the bigger centres to earn a musical living. From Gqeberha are legendary trumpeter Feya Faku, young saxophonist Phumlani Mtiti, who is making waves in Johannesburg now, and bassist Shane Cooper, a Standard Bank Young Artist. Andile Yenana, an admired pianist who was also a Standard Bank Young Artist, hails originally from Qonce, and holding the band together on drums is East London’s Clement Benny. This tribute features the band members’ own compositions but also pays tribute to the music written by Eastern Cape composers over the decades.

Feya Faku (trumpet), Phumlani Mtiti (sax), Andile Yenana (piano), Shane Cooper (bass), Clement Benny (drums)

DSG Hall
Saturday 25 & Sunday 26 June (12:00)
70 minutes
R120
Fuses African traditions, spirituality, soul and jazz

Peddie-based vocalist Dumza Maswana is known more by his Iziduko (clan names) of Khwalo, Ncuthu, Zangwa and Sobese. Clan names are the single most important marker of one’s identity, and identification, roots and place are thus strong themes in songs like ‘Ubizo’ and ‘Beth’emnqwazini’ from his SAMA-nominated debut album ‘Molo’. From the same album, ‘The Letter’ (to his ex) earned him best jazz song at the 2017 Mzansi Jazz Awards. He is known for the depth of his baritone while fusing African traditions, spirituality, soul and jazz to create sonic experiences that uplift, inspire and heal and if you close your eyes and listen, you will hear Stompi Mavi in one phrase and Victor Ntoni in another.

He has performed at the National Arts Festival, Macufe, Buyel ‘Ekhaya, Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the Sing! Festival in Canada and has performed alongside Thandiswa Mazwai, Simphiwe Dana, Ringo Madlingozi, Mafikizolo and the legendary Victor Ntoni, and worked with Banda Banda, DJ Mobi Dixon and Black Motion. This year he teams up with celebrated pianist, composer and producer Andile Yenana – Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz in 2005 – who produced Dumza’s most recent album.

Dumza Maswana (vocals), Andile Yenana (piano), Sisonke Xonti (sax), Sakhile Simani (trumpet), Shane Cooper (bass), Clement Benny (drums)

DSG Hall
Saturday 25 June (20:30) & Sunday 26 June (17:00)
R120
A band on fire

Mthunzi Mvubu is an accomplished jazz saxophonist and flautist who started his music career at the age of 14. At first self-taught, he began studying at the Music Academy of Gauteng under the mentorship of Johnny Mekoa and toured to Britain, Sweden, USA and Germany with the Music Academy of Gauteng Jazz Orchestra, which opened his eyes to the international jazz scene. He has subsequently played on a multitude of stages around the world and has shared stages with names such as Abdullah Ibrahim, Themba Mkhize, Feya Faku, Thandi Ntuli and Tsepo Tshola. Mvubu has appeared on over 19 South African albums and, after recently signing with Ropadope Records, he released his debut album, The 1st Gospel.

Mthunzi Mvubu (sax), Sisonke Xonti (sax), Afrika Mkhize (piano), Dalisu Ndlazi (bass), Sphelelo Mazibuko (drums)

DSG Hall
Monday 27 June
17:00
70 minutes
R120
Varied rhythmic languages and the spirit of ubuntu

Durban-based pianist and composer Sibusiso ‘Mash’ Mashiloane is a virtuoso player and conductor, well known for his live performances and award-winning recordings. His performances have earned him the respect of local and international audiences and his latest album, Music from My People, reflects the composer’s sonic collaboration, internationalism and intergenerational inspiration, featuring many rhythmic languages and an exploration of self-identity. Mashiloane describes the album as a “peace maker”, spreading the spirit of togetherness and ubuntu. An active composer, Mashiloane has released 5 albums since 2016 that were all either nominated or won at various award ceremonies such as the SAMAs, the AFRIMA awards and the International Urban Music Awards. He is also a serious academic, with a Masters in Jazz Performance (cum laude) from the University of KwaZulu Natal, and he is currently working towards his PhD. Mash has certainly established his musical footprint very solidly and rapidly!

Sibusiso Mashiloane (piano), Thabo Sikhakhane (trumpet), Dalisu Ndlazi (bass), Sphelelo Mazibuko (drums), Nomthandazo Madiya (vocals)

DSG Hall
Tuesday 28 June
12:00
70 minutes
R120

Outeniqua High School’s jazz band, though only founded in 2017, is well-known in the Garden Route area and performs at events throughout the Southern Cape. Learners have been able to compose music and perform on festival stages such as the MosJazz Festival, Herold Saxophone Festival, Artscape Youth Jazz Festival and others.

DSG Auditorium
Tuesday 28 June
14:00
45 minutes
R50

Unique, evocative Swiss/SA collaboration

Swiss band Mats-Up joins South African vocalist and songwriter Mbuso Khoza in this unusual and evocative collaboration. The Mats-Up quintet has been led by trumpeter and composer Matthias Spillmann since 1999, and the band, with some different members, performed in Makhanda in 2005. Their music is a riveting combination of avantgarde-ambient music, and the band has been nominated for Preis der Dutschen Schallplattenkritik and the BMW World Jazz Award, winning first place at Moods Blues & Jazz Award as well as second place at ZKB Jazzpreis. The Mats-Up and Mbuso Khoza collaboration exemplifies the bridge over cultural divides that jazz can produce, bringing together musicians from vastly different backgrounds, socially and musically. Mbuso Khoza, who originates from Eshowe and is known for his rich, authentic sound, first collaborated with the band in 2021 with the recording and release of the album “IVOVO”, and this meeting promises to be a riveting musical journey of original sound and creativity.

We are grateful to ProHelvetia (Switzerland) for their support in making this performance possible.

Matthias Spillman (trumpet – CH), Mbuso Khoza (vocals), Reto Suhner (sax – CH), Marc Méan (piano – CH), Raffaele Bossard (bass – CH), Dominic Egli (drums – CH)

DSG Hall
Tuesday 28 June 17:00 & Thursday 30 June 12:00
70 minutes
R120

The Stellenbosch University Gig Band, led by Ramon Alexander, performs at university and other functions and consists of current and past jazz improvisation students, Certificate Programme students and other students interested in learning the art of jazz improvisation. They play standard jazz repertoire, particularly South African jazz compositions.

DSG Auditorium
Tuesday 28 June
19:00
45 minutes
R50

Outstanding Spanish pianist and exciting young SA saxophonist

Pianist Xavi Torres is one of the most outstanding musicians emanating from the Spanish jazz scene. He graduated from the renowned Amsterdam Conservatory with a Bachelor’s degree in Classical music and a Master’s degree in Jazz and he leads his own trio, which won the prestigious Dutch Jazz Competition in 2015 as well as being recognised as ‘Best Jazz Group of 2015’ by the Catalan Jazz Association. The group features lyrical, technical and rhythmic superiority, with explosive energy and interplay. He has recorded more than 20 albums with different bands, has been featured countless times as soloist, was awarded multiple artistic scholarships, and has performed in many of the most important jazz venues across the US and Europe. Collaborating with him in Makhanda is Cape Town saxophonist Justin Bellairs, one of the country’s leading young hornmen.

We are grateful to the Performing Arts Fund NL (Netherlands) for their support in making this performance possible.

Xavi Torres Vicente (piano – ES), Marco Zenini (bass – IT), Jeroen Batterink (drums – NL) + Justin Bellairs (sax)

DSG Hall
Tuesday 28 June
20:30
70 minutes
R120

Jazz in Makhanda has been characterised by the fascinating collaborations that emerge between musicians gathered together at the festival from around the world. Pandemic constraints have unfortunately limited those opportunities at this year’s festival, so we end each day with a unique selection of artists getting a chance to learn about each other’s music by playing together. This will become a jam session, but starts as a planned collaboration. Tonight the jazz is led by Cape Town trombonist Murray Buitendag.

DSG Auditorium
Tuesday 28 June – Friday 1 July (22:00)
R50

Unique mix of traditional Zulu music and jazz

Mbuso Khoza is an award-winning vocalist and songwriter who grew up amongst the rolling hills of Eshowe in Kwa-Zulu Natal and has taken the World Music circuit by storm. He learnt his music early, herding his father’s cattle from the age of five by using Zulu chants to call and direct them, learning the spiritual ancestral music, and listening to the songs of the Zionists at night. In Johannesburg he sought eclectic musical experiences and, while his modern influences have been musicians like Salif Keita, Angelique Kidjo and Richard Bona, this variety of experience has led to his working with musicians as varied as Thandiswa Mazwai, Sibongile Khumalo, Themba Mkhize, Carlo Mombelli and Dutch pianist Mike del Ferro. He has performed extensively in countries like Senegal, Burkina Faso, Portugal, Switzerland, France and The Netherlands and his music is a unique mix of amahubo (Zulu indigenous music) and Jazz.

Mbuso Khoza (vocals), Sibusiso Mashiloane (piano), Thabo Sikhakhane (trumpet), Dalisu Ndlazi (bass), Sphelelo Mazibuko (drums)

DSG Hall
Wednesday 29 June 12:00
70 minutes
R120
AusTebza joins the line-up at the 2022 National Jazz Festival Makhanda
Mbuso Khosa is on the line-up at the 2022 National Jazz Festival Makhanda

The Durban High School Jazz Band started playing together in 2018 and the 8-piece band consists of students aged 16-18 playing international and local jazz repertoire. They perform regularly at lunchtime concerts at DHS, and recently featured at UKZN’s Schools’ Concert at the Centre for Jazz and Popular Music.

DSG Auditorium
Wednesday 29 June
14:00
45 minutes
R50
Amazing confluence of SA and European musicians and influences

Vuma Levin, suggested the Mail & Guardian, “is destined to be one of South African Jazz’s greatest musicians”. Levin is a guitarist, composer and lecturer at the University of the Witwatersrand and winner of this year’s Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Jazz. After music studies in Pretoria he graduated with a Master’s degree cum laude from the Amsterdam Conservatorium and was a semi-finalist at the Montreux Socar International Jazz Guitar competition in Switzerland. His music is centered on post-apartheid South African identity and of his latest album, Antique Spoons, Levin explains that, “The sounds I used on the album are really a mix of many different influences – contemporary jazz, as well as contemporary South African jazz”. It is this complex mix of influences that he ambitiously harnesses in his Makhanda Standard Bank Young Artist performances, combining a string quartet from Amsterdam, a trio of Swiss instrumentalists, a Dutch jazz quartet, and a well-known Dutch arranger and conductor, all interspersed with his guitar playing, and carefully laid out in his complex compositions.

We are grateful to the Performing Arts Fund NL (Netherlands) and ProHelvetia (Switzerland) for their support in making this performance possible.

Vuma Levin (guitar), Bernard van Rossum (sax – NL), Xavi Torres Vicente (piano – ES), Marco Zenini (bass – IT), Jeroen Batterink (drums – NL), Matthias Spillman (trumpet – CH), Andreas Tschopp (trombone – CH), Reto Suhner (sax – CH), Gustavo Cabrera (violin – NL), Yanna Pelser (viola – NL), George Dumitriu (viola – RO), Pau Sola (cello – ES), Tijn Wybenga (conductor – NL)

DSG Hall
Wednesday 29 June
17:00
70 minutes
R120

The SACS Big Band has had audiences tapping their toes for many years, performing at the V&A Waterfront BandSlam, Baxter Big Band Festival, St Joseph’s Marist College Jazz on the Lawn, Wynberg Boys Music Festival, the Hazendal Wine Estate, the Cape Town and Kaapse Afrikaanse Eisteddfods, and many other wonderful events. The band has had a number of notable directors and is now conducted by Michaela Alexander.

DSG Auditorium
Wednesday 29 June
19:00
45 minutes
R50
Truly international SA jazz trio

Born in Gaborone, Botswana, where his musician father was living in exile, Bokani Dyer grew up mainly in Johannesburg before studying jazz at UCT, where he graduated with distinction. He has won numerous accolades including, in 2011, the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Jazz – one of the youngest ever to receive this prestigious recognition. Dyer has recorded five albums under his own name and has appeared on many more, winning a SAMA in 2019 for Best Jazz Album and performing regularly internationally, particularly in Africa and Europe. He is an eclectic artist, constantly finding new avenues to explore: he composed the original score for the film Catching Feelings, has collaborated on theatre projects, has produced albums, and is particularly interested in electronic music, exploring the genre in assorted ensemble formats. The Bokani Dyer Trio has an impressive international track record, having played at the annual JazzAhead showcase in Bremen, Germany; in Switzerland; France and even in the legendary Ronnie Scott’s jazz club in London, UK. And the next weekend, they jet off to Europe to perform at the North Sea Jazz Festival.

Bokani Dyer (piano), Romy Brauteseth (bass), Sphelelo Mazibuko (drums)

DSG Hall
Wednesday 29 June
20:30
70 minutes
R120

Jazz in Makhanda has been characterised by the fascinating collaborations that emerge between musicians gathered together at the festival from around the world. Pandemic constraints have unfortunately limited those opportunities at this year’s festival, so we end each day with a unique selection of artists getting a chance to learn about each other’s music by playing together. This will become a jam session, but starts as a planned collaboration. Tonight the jazz is led by Cape Town saxophonist Justin Bellairs.

DSG Auditorium
Wednesday 29 June
22:00
R50
Parel Vallei in Somerset West has a long-standing Music department that provides ensemble opportunities in a variety of music styles at as many events as possible. Featuring here will be the Big Band, some smaller ensembles and even a taste of Drumline.
DSG Auditorium
Thursday 30 June
14:00
45 minutes
R50
Exploring ‘coloured identity’ through South African jazz

One of South Africa’s leading double and electric bass players, Benjamin Jephta is a graduate of the UCT Jazz programme as well as the world-renowned Berklee Global Jazz Institute in Boston, US. Jephta was featured in the Mail & Guardian’s 200 Young South Africans and received the prestigious Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz award in 2017. His project Born Coloured, Not Born Free stems from the work he did in his Master’s Degree at Berklee where he explored his experience and identity as “a so-called ‘Coloured’ in post-Apartheid democratic South Africa”. Born Coloured, Not Born Free is a dissection of intrinsically South African themes that include ‘transformation’, the ‘coloured identity’, the ‘coloured and black relationship’. His aim, Jephta states, “is to bring awareness, inspire and create a sense of hope, empowerment and unity within the South African experience.”

His compositions are influenced by traditional South African styles such as Ghoema/Cape Jazz, Marabi music and modern African music idioms such as Gqom, Kwaito and hip-hop, weaved through with elements of Black American Music.
Benjamin Jephta (bass), Sisonke Xonti (sax), Simon Manana (sax), Marcus Wyatt (trumpet), Xavi Torres Vicente (piano – ES), Sphelelo Mazibuko (drums)

 

DSG Hall
Thursday 30 June
17:00
70 minutes
R120

The University of Cape Town Music School has for decades produced some of the finest young jazz musicians in the country. Presented here is a selection of UCT’s top jazz vocal and Big Band music co-ordinated by Amanda Tiffin, the highly-experienced Head of Jazz at UCT.

DSG Auditorium
Thursday 30 June
19:0045 minutes
R50
Exciting Dutch/SA big band collaboration

Bernard van Rossum is an Amsterdam-based saxophonist, composer and arranger. As well as playing his original music and touring regularly with his quartet, he also leads the innovative and award-winning BvR Flamenco Big Band. We get a taste of both in Makhanda in a gig that begins with his quartet and then adds a powerful South African horn section to showcase some pared-down Big Band music. Van Rossum has garnered several awards for his solo and ensemble projects and performed in popular venues around the globe, and he is also active as an educator, teaching saxophone, music theory and arranging as well as leading flamenco-jazz workshops.

We are grateful to the Performing Arts Fund NL (Netherlands) for their support in making this performance possible.

Bernard van Rossum (sax – NL), Xavi Torres Vicente (piano – ES), Marco Zenini (bass – IT), Jeroen Batterink (drums – NL) Marc de Kock (sax), Justin Bellairs (sax), Marcus Wyatt (trumpet), Sakhile Simani (trumpet), Thabo Sikhakhane (trumpet), Kyle du Preez (trombone), Murray Buitendag (trombone)

DSG Hall
Thursday 30 June 20:30
70 minutes
R120

Jazz in Makhanda has been characterised by the fascinating collaborations that emerge between musicians gathered together at the festival from around the world. Pandemic constraints have unfortunately limited those opportunities at this year’s festival, so we end each day with a unique selection of artists getting a chance to learn about each other’s music by playing together. This will become a jam session, but starts as a planned collaboration. Tonight the jazz is led by Johannesburg trumpeter Mandla Mlangeni.

DSG Auditorium
Thursday 30 June
22:00
R50
A celebration of school and university jazz choirs and vocal soloists from around the country, who have gathered together in Makhanda as part of the National Youth Jazz Festival, performing with the support of professional jazz musicians and educators –
Amanda Tiffin, Natalie Rungan, Lynette Petersen and Monique Hellenberg.

 

DSG Hall
Friday 1 July
12:00
60 minutes
R50
The Nick Ford Project is led by 19-year-old Capetonian Nick Ford, an electric and double bassist and composer/arranger. His music fuses a uniquely South African jazz sound with hard bop-inspired ensemble playing. He has been working on the Cape Town scene with legends such as Mark Fransman and Buddy Wells, and has also been curating his own musical brand and releasing his original music.

 

DSG Auditorium
Friday 1 July
14:00
45 minutes
R50
Warm, alluring soprano that bridges intercontinental jazz traditions

Born and raised in Mamelodi, Tutu Puoane studied Jazz at UCT, followed by two years at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. She later relocated to Antwerp in Belgium, her current home, where she continues to work on her musical career. Her music is a mix of African, European, and American traditions, and her repertoire is a mix of personal compositions, South African originals, and well-known standards. Puoane is also involved in theatre, and she continues to act in the stage production Dear Winnie. a radical and rousing musical based on the life of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. Tutu received the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Jazz in 2004, and her album Quiet Now, released in 2009, won the SAMA Award for Best Traditional Jazz Album. Tutu has made a name in Europe for herself with her own quartet and as a vocalist for the Brussels Jazz Orchestra – a collaboration that produced Mama Africa, a highly-praised tribute to Miriam Makeba. With an alluring, warm soprano, Tutu is well-known on the international jazz scene and it’s a pleasure to welcome her home for a rare performance.

Tutu Puoane (vocals SA/BE), Marcus Wyatt (trumpet), Ewout Pierreux (piano – BE), Romy Brauteseth (bass), Sphelelo Mazibuko (drums)

DSG Hall
Friday 1 July
17:00
70 minutesBel
R120

Rondebosch Boys’ High School has a dynamic Music Department, with around 150 pupils playing a wide range of instruments and musical styles, and the Jazz Band has built up an enviable reputation over the past 15 years for delivering music of a high standard. The band plays a mix of standard big band repertoire and arrangements of South African jazz. Many former members have gone on to study music locally and abroad, and are now active professionals in the music world. The Band has also been a regular performer at the National Youth Jazz Festival, and over the years many players have been selected to play in the National Schools Big Band.

DSG Auditorium
Friday 1 July
19:00
45 minutes
R50
Belgium-based South African artist Tutu Puoane returns to SA to perform at the National Jazz Festival Makhanda
Kyle Shepherd will perform at the 2022 National Jazz Festival Makhanda
Amazing confluence of SA and European musicians and influences

Guitarist and composer Vuma Levin, 2022 Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz, uses music to try to make sense of the post-apartheid black South African self. He focuses on everyday stories that provoke the listener to react emotionally rather than intellectually to the political questions and dilemmas his music queries. He has come full circle – his first experience of live jazz was watching the National Youth Jazz Band at the Standard Bank Joy of Jazz Festival when he was 17 years old, which is a band for which he was later selected, and he returns as this year’s Standard Bank Young Artist. His second SBYA gig in Makhanda will be as complex as his first, with a combination of Dutch and Swiss musicians on traditional and non-traditional jazz instruments collaborating with a quartet of top-class South African musicians, three of whom have won the Standard Bank Young Artist award themselves.

We are grateful to the Performing Arts Fund NL (Netherlands) and ProHelvetia (Switzerland) for their support in making this performance possible.

Vuma Levin (guitar), Sisonke Xonti (sax), Bokani Dyer (piano), Benjamin Jephta (bass), Jonno Sweetman (drums), Matthias Spillman (trumpet – CH), Andreas Tschopp (trombone – CH), Reto Suhner (sax – CH), Gustavo Cabrera (violin – NL), Yanna Pelser (viola – NL), George Dumitriu (viola – RO), Pau Sola (cello – ES), Tijn Wybenga (conductor – NL)

DSG Hall
Friday 1 July
20:30
70 minutes
R120

Jazz in Makhanda has been characterised by the fascinating collaborations that emerge between musicians gathered together at the festival from around the world. Pandemic constraints have unfortunately limited those opportunities at this year’s festival, so we end each day with a unique selection of artists getting a chance to learn about each other’s music by playing together. This will become a jam session, but starts as a planned collaboration. Tonight the jazz is led by East London trumpeter Sakhile Simani.

DSG Auditorium
Friday 1 July
22:00
R50

The National Schools Jazz Band presents the top school jazz musicians in the country, selected through an online and in-person audition process. The band this year is under the musical direction of world-renowned bassist Hein van de Geyn who moved to Cape Town a decade ago from The Netherlands. Over his playing career he established himself as one of the most sought-after bass players in Europe and has been awarded many of the most prestigious European jazz prizes for his role in the development of European Jazz. He has toured and recorded extensively with Chet Baker, Lee Konitz, Dee Dee Bridgewater and Toots Tielemans amongst hundreds of others, and has performed on most of the world’s great jazz stages.  During a sabbatical period spent in South Africa in 2001/2002, Hein started writing his ‘Comprehensive Bass Method’, which has rapidly become a standard teaching guide for the double bass worldwide, and in 2008 he became the artistic manager of the Rotterdam Jazz Academy. He is an expert teacher of all ages.

DSG Hall
Saturday 2 July
12:00
60 minutes
R50

The Little Giants was established in 1999 by jazz icons Ezra Ngcukana and George Werner for young musicians aged 13 to 23 from the townships of the Cape Flats and beyond, and 250 youth have benefitted from this initiative since then, including leading musicians like Shaun Johannes, Darren English, Lwanda Gogwana, Sisonke Xonti and Keenan Ahrends. The group has performed at most of Cape Town’s major festivals and jazz clubs, has been featured on television and toured to France and Germany, as well as attending the NYJF for over 20 years.

DSG Auditorium
Saturday 2 July
14:00
45 minutes
R50

The National Youth Jazz Band presents a selection of the top young jazz musicians in the country between the ages of 19 and 25, selected through a gruelling online and in-person audition process. This year the band is under the musical direction of award-winning trumpeter Mandla Mlangeni and he creates history – in 2006 he was a student member of this same band and is the first past band member to graduate to conducting it! He was born and raised in Soweto, Johannesburg, and studied jazz composition at UCT. He performs regularly as a freelance musician in various capacities and has been active in numerous projects in Norway, Sweden, Germany, Israel, France, Britain and Botswana, where he performed a wide variety of music ranging from Classical, Jazz, Pop, Balkan and Indigenous African Music. In 2019 was selected as the Standard Bank Young Artist Award winner for Jazz. Working with this group of young musicians, he will be presenting a programme of original material augmented by the musicality of our country’s finest young jazz talent.

DSG Hall
Saturday 2 July
17:00
60 minutes
R50

East London’s Stirling Big Band – conducted by Alan Webster, with the help of Kyle du Preez, Neteske Horton and Sakhile Simani – plays interesting arrangements of classic charts in a standard big band format. The band was formed 31 years ago and is proud of the number of past members still active in South African jazz. The band has performed in 23 towns around the country, including at the Standard Bank Joy of Jazz Festival in Johannesburg and the Hilton Arts Festival and has toured to Zimbabwe, Holland, Germany, Namibia and Britain.

DSG Auditorium
Saturday 2 July
19:00
45 minutes
R50
Challenging boundaries with cutting-edge compositional style and sound

Kyle Shepherd – multi-instrumentalist, composer and band leader – is known internationally for his distinctive compositional style and sound. He has released six critically-acclaimed albums that include collaborations with well-known South African jazz artists such as Zim Ngqawana, Robbie Jansen and Errol Dyers.

He received the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Jazz in 2014, just 10 years after he appeared on the DSG stage as a member of the National Schools Big Band, and also won the UNISA National Piano Competition in 2015. He has become a global performer, featuring at significant festivals in Africa, Europe and Asia and well-known jazz clubs in places like Switzerland and Japan. His main focus in the past few years has been on composing film scores; with a growing discography, Shepherd earned a nomination for the 2017 South African Film & Television Award for Best Achievement in an Original Music Score in a Feature Film for his score for Noem My Skollie. His cutting-edge quartet challenges musical boundaries, and his compositions pay homage to his musical and cultural roots.

Kyle Shepherd (piano), Justin Bellairs (sax), Shane Cooper (bass), Jonno Sweetman (drums)

DSG Hall
Saturday 2 July
20:30
70 minutes
R120

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