2009 MTN Jazz festival promises to be a blast

2009-12-12 00:00

THE 2009 MTN Durban Jazz Festival promises to yet again dazzle jazz lovers with a line-up that includes Lira, Theo, Thandiswa, Busi Mhlongo, Ringo, Caiphus Semenya, Dorothy Masuku, Sipho Hotstix with Harare and African Jazz Pioneers.

Themed “Welcoming the spirit of 2010”, the festival, which is in its seventh year, will also celebrate some of KZN’s finest musicians, like Ntokozo Masinga and Joe Nina, while DJ: Master Blaster handles the decks.

Mdu Ngcobo and Lindelani Mkhize, the brains behind the festival, which will be held on December 26 at Hazelmere Dam, said it was born out of the idea that the region is a destination for many consumers over the festive season, and while they are here mainly for the sun and sea, they also crave quality entertainment that is familiar and relevant.

“We are very proud. When we compare this to other festivals of a similar nature, we alone draw crowds from across the country,” Mkhize said, adding that they were getting more and more calls from artists wanting to be on the bill.

“We also want people to start getting into the vibe for 2010, so we are encouraging them to bring along their vuvuzelas, their favourite soccer gear, and so on …” Mkhize said.

Veli Mabena, general manager for brand and communications at MTN SA, which has sponsored the festival for the past five years, said the company was committed to supporting SA music and its talent, but at the same time they wanted to use the event to help the less fortunate.

“With the assistance of the MTN SA Foundation, we have chosen Cotlands KZN, an organisation that takes care of orphaned and vulnerable children, as the beneficiary for our corporate social investment (CSI) project.

“We are appealing to all jazz lovers who are loyal supporters of this festival to donate all unused household items … at the festival on December 26.”

The organisers are also hoping to encourage festivalgoers to make use of alternate routes to get to Hazlemere or to make use of a park and ride facility from Durban.

Tickets for the festival are R185 and can be bought through Computicket, Shoprite Checkers, and Checkers Hyper Store.

Please note: no bottles, weapons, and gazebos are allowed. Food, refreshments and alcoholic beverages will be on sale.

What is Cotlands?

FOUNDED in 1936, Cotlands was originally created as a care centre for unwed mothers and their infants, and over the years has evolved into an organisation offering shelter for abused, abandoned, HIV-positive, orphaned and terminally ill children from birth to 12 years of age, as well as community based services to vulnerable children in five provinces of South Africa.

In the early 1990s, Cotlands identified an urgent need to care for children directly impacted by HIV/Aids. This focus included the establishment of a paediatric Aids hospice, offering specialised paediatric palliative care 24 hours a day.

At present, Cotlands services eight communities (Johannesburg South, Soweto, Alexandra, and Thembisa in Gauteng, Hlabisa in KwaZulu-Natal, East London in Eastern Cape, Helderberg in the Western Cape and Lydenburg in Mpumalanga), impacting more than 2 000 families either directly (through home-based care and residential care) or indirectly (via outreach, training, capacity building and counselling).

For more information, log on to www.cotlands.org. To contact the KwaZulu-Natal branch, phone Jenni Higgs on 082 881 7221 or Connie van Niekerk on 082 325 9647.

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