Sampson’s Afrikan dream
Thursday is the 23rd anniversary of World Aids Day. To mark the day, and to increase awareness around HIV/Aids, The Africa Centre for HIV/Aids Management at Stellenbosch University is hosting its annual gala concert at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.
It is an opportunity for the public to support a good cause, get glammed up, mix with celebs and enjoy a show which includes performances by icons like Ladysmith Black Mambazo and Vicky Sampson. Soli Philander is MC. The concert is staged in partnership with the Western Cape Health Department.
The name Vicky Sampson is synonymous with the song, Afrikan Dream – the hit off her 1995 album, Zai – which became a potent anthem for the Rainbow Nation, and she will be singing it on Thursday.
She explained: “Afrikan Dream is the song that brought me to peoples’ minds and hearts – that’s why I am still here. I will be doing something different. It will be a surprise. We have an orchestra (the Mike Campbell Rhythm Orchestra) and a choir, so I think it will be amazing.”
Sampson became aware of The Africa Centre for HIV/Aids Management in May on a flight back from Kimberley. She was on the bus to the airport terminal when the centre’s Jimmie Earl Perry introduced himself to her. He told her about their work and that he had just released a new CD, with Afrikan Dream being track number one. Would she be interested in performing at the centre’s concerts? She immediately agreed. Since then, Sampson has done a number of shows with the American-born Earl Perry who settled in Cape Town in 2004.
A veteran of musical theatre in the US, he took up the position as visiting professor and director of educational theatre and creative arts at the centre and wanted to make a difference in the way HIV/Aids was brought to society’s attention.
Perry works with youngsters from local communities in Stellenbosch and produces shows which are used to highlight issues in an entertaining and accessible format.
In the process, the centre also nurtures creativity and mentors new talent – all the good stuff that we need to make our African dream become a reality – things that Sampson stands for and applauds.
December is gearing up to be a busy month for Sampson with numerous engagements and family celebrations. She is hoping to get away for a weekend break with her husband so she can be in top form to do Christmas lunch at her home in Kenilworth, with help from her mom.
This is an epic affair with mutton curry, seafood breyani, roast turkey and all the trimmings.
As for the new year, Sampson is hoping to put out a new album and develop a show about her journey with Afrikan Dream – from a girl growing up in Hanover Park and Bishop Lavis to where she is now.
l Tickets for the World Aids Day Gala Concert cost R120 from Computicket on 0861 915 8000. In addition to Ladysmith Black Mambazo and Vicky Sampson, the line-up includes Jimmie Earl Perry, Sharon Kips, Larry Joe; Vuyiseka Dubula, Nombeko Mpongo and Toni Zimmerman (three HIV-positive women); jazz and opera singers.
On the Boards
l SOLOMON AND MARION – There’s usually not much drama on at this time of the year, so don’t miss Janet Suzman in Lara Foot Newton’s fantastic play which finishes today at the Baxter with performances at 2pm and 7pm. Book at Computicket on 0861 915 80001. Another must-see is London Road at the Fugard, with Robyn Scott and Ntombi Makhutshi which ends on December 7. Fugard bookings through Computicket or at the theatre on 021 461 4554.
l Nederburg picnic concert – In last week’s On the Boards, some of the details were incorrect, regarding the line-up for the Nederburg picnic concert which takes place today, from 5pm in front of the Nederburg Manor House. The programme includes the Cape Philharmonic’s Youth Orchestra and Youth Wind Ensemble and jazz band, MoJazz. Gates open at 3pm. Tickets cost R60 and there is no charge for under-12s. Bookings: 082 419 6990.
l JOSH GROBAN – The popular crooner will be singing at GrandWest on Tuesday and Wednesday. Shows start at 8pm, and we hope he starts on time, unlike Janet Jackson who kept the crowds waiting for half an hour. Tickets R350 to R685 from Computicket on 0861 915 8000. - Weekend Argus