Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis did a test run for the annual City of Cape Town Festive Lights Switch-On event on Tuesday evening and could not contain his excitement.
The much-anticipated 54th event takes place on Sunday, November 26, at 4pm and is seen as a jump-start to the festive season in the Mother City and sees thousands make their way to the central business district (CBD) for a day and night of fun and entertainment.
The event is free for all.
The City of Cape Town has promised festival-goers a glimpse into the future with a fresh new vibe and theme – Cape Town: A Future of Hope – that looks to meld the heritage of the city and natural environment with that of the promise of what a technologically-charged tomorrow can bring.
Hill-Lewis will do the official switching on of the lights and something different this year is the switch-on will be followed by a pyrotechnics display and a spectacular light show mapped out on the wall of City Hall.
A 10-metre high purpose-built tree will be lit up at the Grand Parade and decorated in green foliage and festooned with lights throughout the festive period.
While load shedding may be a pain across South Africa, mayoral committee member for energy, Councillor Beverley van Reenen said there will be no waste of electricity during this period.
“The festive lights that have been put up in different areas across the city are switched on as part of the different street light circuits and will also go off when the surrounding area experiences load shedding. The festive lights in the CBD region will stay on during the festive season. The lights are LED energy saving and therefore consume minimal energy,” she said.
During his test run in Adderley Street, Hill-Lewis was elated at pre-launch as entertainers showed their Capetonian spirit in song and dance.
“This is a long time tradition in Cape Town. In just a few weeks time tens of thousands of families are going to come down these streets to see the lights,” Hill-Lewis said.
“The theme this year is: A future of hope. A future of hope for everyone, no matter the side you come from ... no matter the background you have, you have a future of hope in our city because our city is doing the right thing to prepare for that future and build it together,” he said.
“All indications are that we are going to have a bumper season.”
He said the City of Cape Town peaked during its 2018 season and all indications show this year’s season will bring a record number of visitors to the city.
The headliner acts for this year’s concert is ward-winning artist, rapper, record producer, entrepreneur and part-time boxer, Cassper Nyovest.
Amapiano frontrunner, Focalistic will also be performing along with Ikamva Marimba Band, Alistair Izobell, Whitney April, 12-year-old Yonwaba Qetswana, Ricky Vani Frontline, Matthew Mole, rock ‘n roll Afrikaans band, RAAF, Hanover Park’s cultural singing troupe, the Tjommies, The Rivertones, DJ Eazy, with special guest, 10-year-old DJ Sophia.
Guiding the events will be actress, Jill Levenberg, actor Maurice Paige, and radio personality Carl Wastie.