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A definite highlight on the arts calendar in KwaZulu-Natal and the rest of the country is the well-known Durban International Blues Festival, which is under way. It is hard to believe that the popular event that has hosted an array of spectacular blues talent over the years is now in its ninth year.
Having officially started yesterday, the fest will run until Sunday at the Wilson’s Wharf.
The concept was born by looking at an event that would become synonymous with Durban as the city and, of course, there proved to be a ready market for it.
The director and publicist of the Durban International Blues Festival, Tanya Van Agthoven, says: “Even though the fest may seem small in comparison to other music events in South Africa, it does not matter much because it’s a very intimate festival and it’s well known in Durban.
“Also, from an international perspective, we are quite astounded with word of mouth and it has become recognised as a sought-after festival. We listen to what people like and what they want to see and hear, so that’s how we improve each year by getting the best international and national artists. We want to keep the audience happy because without them, we don’t have an audience.”
Boasting some great blues talent, the stellar line-up this year includes a combination of local national and international artists. They include Dan Patlansky (pictured), Soul Sistas, Zwarte Piet, The Pinkie Mtshali Blues Band, Frutland Jackson (US), Donna Herula (US), the Acoustic Blues Jam and more.
The event will also host an edu- cational blues master class. It will run daily until Friday. It will focus on the blues as a genre and will include Frutland Jackson, Sebastian Goldswain of the Sir Walrus Band, Richard Haslop, Donna Herula and Raoul Roux.
• The Durban International Blues Festival will run until Sunday at Wilson’s Wharf. For more info, call Tanya at 082 747 9738.