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THIS year Artscape’s Youth Jazz Festival, on Saturday at 7.30pm, celebrates its 10th anniversary with seven soloists. Director and conductor, jazz trumpeter Ian Smith will be joined by drummer Kevin Gibson, pianist Andrew Ford and double bassist Wesley Rustin to form a jazz ensemble that will accompany the soloists.
All the soloists come from the Western Cape and include: vocalist Adele Wyngaard from Kraaifontein, pianist Angelo Panizza from Lansdowne, bass guitarist Brendon Hendricks from Delft, tenor saxophonist Lindelo Mangesi from Gugulethu, vocalist Marcé Underwood from Little Mowbray, guitarist Mark Williams and vocalist Whitney Olivier from Mitchells Plain.
Already making waves in the jazz arena, some of these musicians have represented SA at local and international jazz festivals and events such as the prestigious Big Band Festival, the National Jazz Festival in Grahamstown and the Cape Town International Jazz Festival. They have also appeared on television and radio.
Since its inception, the educational programme has changed each year to create exciting challenges for participants, developing creativity and diversity. Last year the Delft Big Band, conducted by Smith, accompanied six soloists with Smith also mentoring the band and soloists. In previous years, youth bands have received individual mentorship with well-known jazz musicians in preparation for their performance at the festivals, with Gibson and Rustin among those mentors.
In 2003 Artscape Audience Development and Education included the Youth Jazz Festival as an extension of their annual Classical Youth Music Festival, to give young instrumental soloists and singers the opportunity of performing with a professional orchestra. The 2012 festival will follow the same concept.
Marlene le Roux, director of the Audience Development and Education Department, said: “There is a phenomenal jazz tradition in the Cape which will be kept alive through nurturing these young musicians.”
l Tickets are R80. To book call Computicket on 0861 915 8000 or Artscape Dial-a-Seat, 021 421 7695.