Fagrie Isaacs to perform his soulful Luther Vandross tribute show to Joburg this festive season

Singing sensation Fagrie Isaacs during a performance. Picture: Supplied.

Singing sensation Fagrie Isaacs during a performance. Picture: Supplied.

Published Dec 6, 2023


After serenading audiences across the country, Fagrie Isaacs is now set to take his soulful Luther Vandross tribute show to Johannesburg this festive season.

As part of his national tour, the South African singing sensation is ready to show Gauteng audiences why he is known as one of the best Vandross tribute acts.

“We will be taking audiences on a musical journey like no other, in true Luther Vandross fashion,” Isaacs said.

“Because I have been a fan for many years, I can't wait to share my vision of the Luther Vandross experience with the audience.”

The 41-year-old is set to bring some of the late iconic soul R&B singer, songwriter, and record producer’s greatest hits to life when he performs at Gold Reef City’s The Lyric Theatre on December 30.

Included in the set list will be Vandross fan favourites such as “Never Too Much”, “Always and Forever”, “Dance with my Father”, “Power of Love” and “Evergreen”.

He will be joined on stage by fellow musicians Andrea Fortuin, Anslin Gysman, Jade Engelbrecht and Samantha Hendricks, as well as a band.

And while Isaacs has fans across South Africa, this Joburg performance is close to his heart because it will be the first time that he will be performing in the city.

“I have many (social media) followers from across the country, and I have had the pleasure of performing in most of the country over the last year, but my beautiful people in Johannesburg have yet to see me perform live,” he said.

“In my line of work, I do not have many firsts left to experience, but I am so happy to say that this will be a first for me.”

Isaacs’ love for Vandross began as a child, and he said it just took one moment of significance for him to be hooked.

Singing sensation Fagrie Isaacs during a performance. Picture: Supplied.

“I was sleeping over at my uncle’s place and my cousin came home with a new CD that he had purchased.

“He immediately played ‘Impossible Dream’ and I remember it made me feel something that no other song has ever done.

“I was not sure whether it was the silky tone that he projected or the magical arrangement of the music, but something about that had touched my soul and it has never left until this day,” Isaacs said.

This love for the world-renowned musician inspired the Cape Town artist to start his onstage journey, and 35 years later, he is still going strong.

At just six-years-old, he became the lead vocalist for his school choir. Isaacs then joined the popular Cape Town boy band, The Boyz, and their album called “Getting Ready for the Party” was released just in time for the 2010 Fifa World Cup in South Africa.

Singing sensation Fagrie Isaacs during a performance. Picture: Supplied.

This also led to Isaacs becoming the lead male vocalist for the production of the Cape Carnival album.

Following these accolades with “The Boyz”, Isaacs decided to embark on a solo career and he began to hone his skills as a Luther Vandross tribute act.

As a solo artist, he also featured in several music productions in the Mother City.

And in 2014, he started his own events production company, Fi6 Events & Projects, which produced sold-out events like “FabuSolo”, featuring artists and band members, and included the likes of local pop group, The Rockets.

Isaacs was also one of the three voices of the soulful trio, SoulCut3, and together with fellow musicians Nur Abrahams and Tye Platinum, the group had successful runs in the Cape Town entertainment scene.

He was also the lead singer in his Islamic Gospel band Unity, who went on to be the headline act for five years at the Durban Exhibition Centre. The band also toured the UK after releasing their debut album, “In Love and War”.

Isaacs is also passionate about Cape Town’s Malay choirs and as part of the group called Cape Malay Stars he was invited to perform in New York at the iconic Carnegie Hall in 2014.

Some of his other musical achievements include him being the “TOP” prize winner for the “Coon” song item, boasting a whopping 19 first prize awards - the most ever.

And after entertaining audiences for 35 years, Isaac's love for Vandross remains enduring.

“I love the fact that so many people share the same love for this amazing artist with me,” he said.

“People often come to me after the show and will say things like; ‘Luther is smiling down on you, you did him proud. You sound just like Luther’.

“When I close my eyes I swear I’m listening to Luther himself. I find it very rewarding that the audience feels that I can do justice to the icon that was Luther Vandross,” he said.

Tickets for the show at The Lyric Theatre can be purchased at Computicket.