High honours for Durban pianist

Sibusiso Mash Mashiloane.

Sibusiso Mash Mashiloane.

Published Mar 17, 2024


Durban-based pianist, composer, and researcher Sibusiso Mash Mashiloane has been awarded the prestigious HSS Award for Music Composition.

This recognition celebrates artistic merit and cultural depth showcased in his album Music from My People.

The award, presented by the National Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences (NIHSS) Awards, honours significant contributions in the Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) fields.

“This award is deeply meaningful,” said Mashiloane. “It not only validates my work, but also serves as a powerful reminder to our people, particularly the younger generation, of the importance of tradition and cultural music ‒ the very foundation of our musical identity,” says Mashiloane.

Mashiloane’s album blends the vibrant tapestry of African music styles with the sophistication of jazz in which diverse musical elements come together harmoniously.

Music from My People stood out among other submissions, with the jury commending its “high production quality and a level of composition that reflects the artist’s experience”.

Mashiloane’s album, Music of My People, joins a string of successes for the Durban pianist, composer, researcher and UKZN lecturer.

Mashiloane also received long-listings for two other albums, Izibongo and Ihubo Labomdabu.

Mashiloane’s piano playing is characterised by both technical finesse and a dynamic style and the album’s elements interweave and evolve seamlessly.

Each track presents a distinct soundscape, drawing inspiration from South Africa’s cultural heritage. Collaborations with a multitude of talented musicians further elevate the album.

Mashiloane’s ongoing research, focusing on the concept of "the sounds of home" through his PhD studies, directly influences his creative process.

Music from My People joins a string of successes for the musician, including 6 previous awards and nominations for accolades like the SAMAs and the AFRIMA Awards.

A key figure in the South African Jazz scene, Mashiloane continues to garner international attention while growing in stature at home with his dedication to his craft, exploration of cultural heritage, his multifaceted role as lecturer and researcher at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and pursuit of understanding “the sounds of home”.

Independent on Saturday