Standard Bank is the premier sponsor of major arts and jazz events in the country, including the Standard Bank Jazz Festival
in Grahamstown and the Standard Bank Joy of Jazz
The Standard Bank Jazz Jol
features celebrated Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz
2012, Afrika Mkhize, Quattro Fusion comprising the 2010 award recipients for Jazz and Classical Music - Melanie Scholtz and Samson Diamond, at the University of KwaZulu-Natal Big Band and others to provide a feast of music in an endeavour to raise funds for the Ronnie Madonsela Scholarship (RMS).
The RMS assists disadvantaged jazz students at at the University of KwaZulu-Natal on many levels with financial aid or support. The RMS also provides bursaries for deserving students and also funds students’ travel and accommodation to the National Youth Jazz Festival
in Grahamstown and other educational festivals, workshops and conferences.
Described as representing “the exciting new face of South African jazz” by Alan Webster, director of the Standard Bank Jazz Festival
, Grahamstown, Afrika Mkhize has made his mark in the SA music landscape in recent years.
Son of legendary jazz musician, Themba Mkhize, he began playing the piano at 6. Raised on a sugarcane farm in Mbumbulu, KwaZulu-Natal; Mkhize cites the music played by the workers from the former Transkei as having played an important part in his musical journey. He trained with a bursary at the National School of the Arts and later the Pretoria Technikon and spent a number of years in Paris imbibing its jazz scene. The attraction was the confluence of musicians from the African Diaspora, exposing him to this continent's music.
Mkhize combines clear South African roots with excellent technique and the world’s music influences. He was pianist and musical director for Miriam Makeba and has played with many South African musicians of her stature, as well as branching out into the production of recordings by musicians such as Themba Mkhize, Kabelo and Nokukhanya Dlamini.
“Steeped in South Africa’s musical heritage, he displays a fresh, international perspective that places South African jazz in a new perspective. He is a pianist with serious jazz chops who has the versatility to play music from across the spectrum, from African grooves to hip-hop to straight-ahead jazz, and in any company,” says Webster.
Afrika Mkhize will be joined by Cape Town musicians Kesivan Naidoo (drums), Buddy Wells (saxophone) and Wesley Rustin (bass) and they will perform a selection of his original material.
Quattro Fusion, initiated by Standard Bank to showcase the 2010 Standard Bank Young Artists for Music, is a collaboration between the award recipients, Melanie Scholtz, a renowned jazz singer and Samson Diamond, a talented classical violinist.
The Quattro Fusion show sees the combination of these two musical talents with fellow South African musicians, pianist Melvin Peters and percussionist Godfrey Mgcina.
The programme of fusion of African and classical rhythms from the quartet will include the works of Bach, Gershwin, Abdullah Ibrahim and Miriam Makeba. Quattro Fusion has toured all over South Africa and performed at several festivals as well as in Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria.
The Standard Bank Jazz Jol
takes place at the Centre for Jazz and Popular Music (CJPM), Level 2, Shepstone Building at University of KwaZulu-Natal. Entrance is through main UKZN gate, Masizi Kunene Avenue.
Tickets are R100 (Pensioners R80 and students R50). There are early bird discounts of R80 and group discounts for pensioners at R75 for a group of 10. To book, contact Thuli on 031 260 3385 or email Zamat1@ukzn.ac.za