The 2012 Mzansi Fela Festival provides a broad range of entertainment from theatre productions through to dance, top music acts and hilarious comedians.
The State Theatre in Pretoria becomes a focal point for the performing arts community in Mzansi and some of the most eagerly anticipated performances will come in the jazz and African music show to be staged at the Kilnerton Theatre on Sunday, December 9 from 12h00.
Selealo Selota is a rising star, whose career has developed at an outstanding rate. The last two years have seen him carve out a niche for himself in the highly-competitive South African Afro Jazz scene.
In addition to the recent success of his landmark debut album "Painted Faces", which achieved platinum status for sales in excess of 60 000 units, his latest release "Enchanted Gardens", has also achieved "gold" status. The former gold miner is now mining the same precious metal, but armed with a guitar, rather than a drill.
Steve Dyer has played alongside Jonas Gwangwa, Hugh Masekela and Wilson ‘King Force’ Silgee, and helped Gwangwa form the band Shakawe. It was during this period that Steve chose the saxophone and flute as his main instruments of expression, having also taught himself to play the guitar at the age of 11.
Joining them on stage will be Ngwako Manamela, a Tshwane based musician who has been performing for over 30 years. Ngwako is known as the only black vibraphonist in the country, and this has led him to be featured by reputable artists like Miriam Makeba (on her album "Reflections"), Vusi Mahlasela ("Meyela Afrika"), Hugh Masekela and Don Laka ("Paradise"), to name a few.
Ngwako has also released his own album, "Ramelodi" and is a regular feature at jazz festivals around the country.
Performing in a star-studded line-up at the outdoor venue will also be Ladies in Jazz, who were formed in 1998 by drummer Anikki Maswanganye and Thandi Mahlangu. The Afro-jazz group has been a backing band for Yvonne Chaka Chaka, Wendy Oldfield and Natalie Rungan.
Aside from Maswanganye and Mahlangu, the band also consists of Zodwa Mabena (bassist, vocalist), Sankie Motsei (keyboard/pianist, vocalist) Lesego Nkonyane (saxophone, vocalist) and Thope Diniso (guitarist, vocalist), as well as various guest artists.
The Tshwane-based Four Seasons define their music as "world music" and are winners of the Puisano Live Music 2009. Formed in 2004, the band comprises the talented Sbusile Xaba (Kwazulu-Natal), Ntando Mbatha (Kwazulu-Natal), Bonolo 'Scorpion' Nkoane (Free State) and Lesedi Ntsane (Gauteng).
The band says they take the audience through a journey with all the colours of all four seasons … a sound that is a result of allowing each member’s spirituality and individualism to come to the fore and hence distinguish the band.
Gcobisa will join the impressive line-up of jazz musicians on 9 December at the State Theatre in Pretoria.
Her career took off when she joined gospel sensation, Sound Of Nuness as lead vocalist in 2000 and collaborated with gospel sensation, Maureen Kekana (Sister Blaze).
In 2003 she joined a traditional dance and music band called Muzika Wa Makhado, which strategically positioned her to represent South Africa at the annual third Cioff Arts Festival held in Hungary in 2004.
After numerous local performances, collaborations (ZUBZ and H2O), community initiatives and projects, her solo career was launched in 2006 after recording her first album titled Lefika Laka.
Tickets for the jazz and African music show at Kilnerton Theatre can be purchased at R80 from Computicket outlets and R100 at the door.
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