Tutu Puoane’s Belgian Quartet in ‘Litsha

2017-10-05 06:00
Tutu Puoane.

Tutu Puoane.

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Songbird Tutu Puoane returns to Cape Town to perform with her world class Belgian band at Isivivana Centre in Khayelitsha this Sunday 8 October from 4pm.

This concert which forms part of the Jazz in the Native Yards sessions comes after house-full performances at Johannesburg’s prestigious Joy of Jazz festival last weekend, featuring her band comprising of Ewout Pierreux (piano), Nicolas Thys (bass) and Dre Pallemaerts (drums).

The two time SAMA Award winner Puoane’s Quartet tour was made possible by Flanders State of the Art, the northern federated state of Belgium with Brussels as its capital. A trained jazz vocalist, Puoane finished her vocal studies at the College of Music at the University of Cape Town (UCT).

After turning down a recording contract with a major South African record company Puoane decided to grab a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to go and study in Europe. She developed becoming one of the unique jazz vocalists and performers gaining respect in Europe from musicians and audiences alike.

She has released two albums with her band, Song in 2007 and Quiet Now in 2009, which won a SAMA in 2010. Both of which received critical acclaim. One of Europe's best big bands, the Brussels Jazz Orchestra, invited her to work with them, resulting in an album called Mama Africa, celebrating the life and times of Miriam Makeba, which scooped the South African Music Award for Best Traditional Jazz Album of 2011.

Amongst Tutu's fans are international music celebrities like harmonica-legend Toots Thielemans and queen of jazz voice, miss Dianne Reeves.

Yet, to the South African audience she still remains a well-kept secret, only known in small jazz surroundings. The fact that she is arguably one of the best young voices and personalities South Africa has ever produced, should easily change that for the better.

Born in 1979 in Atteridgeville township and grew up in Mamelodi, Pretoria. She started playing music professionally in 1997 in downtown Johannesburg. Tu studied jazz vocals at UCT with Jelena Reveshin and Virginia Davids and at the royal conservatory of The Hague (Netherlands) with Rachel Gould. She played concerts all over the world in countries like Italy, US (New York and New Orleans), Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, France, Luxemburg and Switzerland.

Tutu has performed extensively in South Africa with many great South African musicians. In 2001, she performed at the north sea jazz festival cape town, leading an Afro-latino band, Tucan Tucan. She has toured New York in 2000 as the vocalist with the South African National Youth Big Band. She received several awards from major South African jazz competitions.

In 2000 she was won the Old Mutual Jazz Encounters for Cape region and in 2001 she received a merit award for young promising talent at the Daimler Chrysler South African jazz competition. In 2004 she was the recipient of the Standard Bank Young Artist of the Year Award for music.

In September of 2002, Puoane moved to Europe, spending a year and a half in The Netherlands to study and then relocating in 2004 to her current home in Antwerp, Belgium, where she is working steadily on her career.

Tutu has shared the stage with the very best South African and International jazz musicians. Beginning April 2008 she blew away a full house at the Cape Town International Jazz Festival, leaving her fellow South Africans in awe of her voice, charisma and unique mix of jazz, soul and African music.

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