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.
We are grateful to Pro Helvetia Johannesburg, the Swiss Arts Council and Fonds Podium Kunsten Performing Arts Fund NL for making this performance possible.