News / Africa

Cape Town Prepares for International Jazz Festival

Music fans look forward to the upcoming 11th Annual Cape Town International Jazz Festival

Singaporian singer Hanjin will appear at this year's Cape Town festivities.
Singaporian singer Hanjin will appear at this year's Cape Town festivities.



The Cape Town International Jazz Festival enters its 12th year this year and takes place on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 March at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.  Forty bands will perform on five stages to an expected full-capacity crowd of 33, 500.

In 2010, The Cape Town International Jazz Festival contributed around US $68 million to the economy of Cape Town .  South Africa’s president Jacob Zuma praised the event in this year’s State of the Nation address for bringing 2,300 temporary jobs to the city.

Xhosa singer Simphiwe Dana
Xhosa singer Simphiwe Dana

“It’s an incredible achievement for one city to have one event generate so much money! So we’re very proud. The national GDP is nearly 700 million rand [US $100 million]. This spending is across the board – they [visitors] move from Cape Town up to Johannesburg and up the coast, so this money is spent along the coast as well,” says Billy Domingo the Production Director for the Cape Town International Jazz Festival.

The GDP was boosted by flights, hotels, restaurants and night clubs which were packed by visitors. This year is expected to be no different as well-known and new musicians have been confirmed on the 2011 line-up.

As in previous years, the 40 musicians will be split equally between African and those from abroad.  Among the artists from abroad are Singapore’s Hanjin,  and several from the US, including Earth, Wind and Fire, Dave Koz, BeBe Winans, Jazzanova,  and this year’s Grammy-award Best New Artist,  Esperanza Spalding.

The African performers billed to perform include:  soul singer Simphiwe Dana,  musicians Hugh Masekela and Youssou N’dour and bands The Flames and Gang of Instrumentals.

“I’m glad with the line-up. Earth Wind and Fire is something that acknowledges who Rashid [Other organizer] and I are. But I’m also glad that [Xhosa singer] Simphiwe Dana gets a chance to come back and perform the way that she wants to perform. And that the Gang of Instrumentals plays on the stage out here. And, our artists at night collaborate and jam, and that’s when you truly see artists in motion in the sense that they learn from each other play from the same drum. That is what it’s about, ” explains Domingo.

Besides the performances, other scheduled events around the Cape Town International Jazz Festival include music and journalism workshops as well as a photographic exhibition that showcases the growth of jazz around the world.

And, on the Wednesday, March 23rd, two days before the festival, there will also be a free community concert in Cape Town that will include international and local performers.

You May Like

Video Americans, Tourists, Reflect on Meaning of Thanksgiving

VOA garnered opinions from several people soon after November 13 Paris attacks, which colored many of their thoughts

Video Thais Send Security Concerns Down the River

In northern Thailand, the annual tradition of constructing floating baskets to carry away the year’s bad spirits highlights the Loy Krathong festival

Video Tree Houses - A Branch of American Dream

Workshops aimed at teaching people how to build tree houses have become widely popular in America in recent years

This forum has been closed.
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

By the Numbers

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against ISi
November 24, 2015 3:04 AM
The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against IS

The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Americans Sharpen Focus on Terrorism

Washington will be quieter than usual this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday, even as Americans across the nation register heightened concerns over possible terrorist threats. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports new polling data from ABC News and the Washington Post newspaper show an electorate increasingly focused on security issues after the deadly Islamic State attacks in Paris.

Video World Leaders Head to Paris for Climate Deal

Heads of state from nearly 80 countries are heading to Paris (November 30-December 11) to craft a global climate change agreement. The new accord will replace the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change that expired in 2012.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

Video Creating Physical Virtual Reality With Tiny Drones

As many computer gamers know, virtual reality is a three-dimensional picture, projected inside special googles. It can fool your brain into thinking the computer world is the real world. But If you try to touch it, it’s not there. Now Canadian researchers say it may be possible to create a physical virtual reality using tiny drones. VOA’s George Putic reports.

Video New American Indian Village Takes Visitors Back in Time

There is precious little opportunity to experience what life was like in the United States before its colonization by European settlers. Now, an American Indian village built in a park outside Washington is taking visitors back in time to experience the way of life of America's indigenous people. Carol Pearson narrates this report from VOA's June Soh.

Video Even With Hometown Liberated, Yazidi Refugees Fear Return

While the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar has been liberated from Islamic State forces, it's not clear whether Yazidi residents who fled the militants will now return home. VOA’s Mahmut Bozarslan talked with Yazidis, a religious and ethnic minority, at a Turkish refugee camp in Diyarbakır. Robert Raffaele narrates his report.

Video Nairobi Tailors Make Pope Francis’ Vestments

To ensure the pope is properly attired during his visit, the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops asked the Dolly Craft Sewing Project in the Nairobi slum of Kangemi to make the pope's vestments, the garments he will wear during the various ceremonies. Jill Craig reports.

Video Cross-Border Terrorism Puts Europe’s Passport-Free Travel in Doubt

The fallout from the Islamic State terror attacks in Paris has put the future of Europe’s passport-free travel area, known as the "Schengen Zone," in doubt. Several of the perpetrators were known to intelligence agencies, but were not intercepted. Henry Ridgwell reports from London European ministers are to hold an emergency meeting Friday in Brussels to look at ways of improving security.

Video El Niño Brings Unexpected Fish From Mexico to California

Fish in an unexpected spectrum of sizes, shapes and colors are moving north, through El Niño's warm currents from Mexican waters to the Pacific Ocean off California’s coast. El Nino is the periodic warming of the eastern and central Pacific Ocean. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this phenomenon thrills scientists and gives anglers the chance of a once-in-a-lifetime big catch. Faith Lapidus narrates.

Video Terrorism in Many Forms Continues to Plague Africa

While the world's attention is on Paris in the wake of Friday night's deadly attacks, terrorism from various sides remains a looming threat in many African countries. Nigerian cities have been targeted this week by attacks many believe were staged by the violent Islamist group Boko Haram. In addition, residents in many regions are forced to flee their homes as they are terrorized by armed militias. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Study: Underage Marriage Rate Higher for Females in Pakistan

While attitudes about the societal role of females in Pakistan are evolving, research by child advocacy group Plan International suggests that underage marriage of girls remains a particularly big issue in the country. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports how such marriages leads to further social problems.

VOA Blogs