The African Music and Dance 3rd year students under the directorship of Dr. Opondo, will be hosting the 12th Annual African Cultural Calabash and African Cuisine which is one of the biggest concerts within the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal Howard College (School of Arts). The concert will be held on Friday 6th of October 2017 at Howard College Theatre at 7:30 pm.

“The theme for this year is ‘ROOTLESS AFRICA, REMEMBRANCE OF WHO WE WERE’. Due to the fact that in South Africa, we have had multiple incidents of women abuse and human trafficking, which have painted an ugly picture about Africans; with this theme we are hoping to bring back love, unity and a sense of Ubuntu. The concert celebrates cultural diversity in both music and culture.” Says Michelle Mchunu one of the Calabash Organising Team.

The concert features artists from various cultural backgrounds. The headliners are Ithwasa Lekhansela a Maskandi artist from Umbumbulu who has worked with Maskandi giants Bahubhe  and Phuzekhemisi. His other achievements include being nominated for SATMA awards as the best new comer and AMASAVA awards as the song of the year. Also featured at this event is a young group from the south coast, Emzini Arts Youth Production. They integrate music, dance and theatre, and have performed in various venues such as The Durban Playhouse and Ushaka Marine World. Burundi Drummers – A percussion ensemble originally from Burundi in Central-East Africa, established themselves in Durban in 2009. The group has performed at the International Convention Centre and for the Royal Zulu family in Kwa-Nongoma; UKZN African Music and Dance Ensemble a group of first and second year African Music and Dance students who are passionate and aspiring performing artists; Nkosinathi Ntshangase Quintet which is led by trombone player Ntshangase. The Quintet has performed in various places around Durban. Classically trained Ntshangase plays African and jazz inspired tunes.

Dr. P Opondo says that “The Annual African Cultural Calabash is a main cultural event of the UKZN African Music Project and provides a platform to celebrate various cultural traditions, and for exiting students to have hands on experience in producing and hosting a large-scale cultural event as part of the training in my module African Music Outreach: Community Development.  I thank the National Arts Council of South Africa, SAMRO Foundation and Concerts SA for sponsoring the 12th edition of the African Cultural Calabash.”

Join us at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal, Howard College Theatre on Friday the 6th of October 2017 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are R80 Adults and R40 Students and are available at the UKZN Centre for Jazz  Howard College Campus.  Please note that the show will be followed by delicious African cuisine (Samp, dumplings, biryani, sweet potato, tripe, ujeqe, chicken curry, inhloko amongst others)

For more information contact Thulile Zama at the Centre for Jazz at 0312603385 or Chairperson of the Calabash Committee Lihle James at 0790705940 or email: or Dr. P Opondo  Direct Media Enquiries either to the Calabash Chair Ms. James or to Dr. Opondo.

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