Editor’s Note: Since the publication of this article, the 2020 Cape Town International Jazz Festival has been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The Cape Town International Jazz Festival (CTIJF) is the largest music event in sub-Saharan Africa – but it is about much more than just the sweet sound of jazz.
Through its Sustainable Training and Development programme, the festival aims to educate and upskill the youth, offering them learning experiences that tap into the knowledge of the world’s premier musicians and fostering the next generation of jazz talent.
This year more than 50 pupils from five Western Cape schools were given a platform to explore future careers in the music industry.
Grade 10-12 pupils from selected schools attended four weekend Music and Careers workshops, in which facilitators presented on a range of career options including performing, sound engineering, lighting and festival management.
At the end of the four-week programme, pupils took part in a live performance and were chosen to join the Cape Town International Jazz Festival All Star band, which will perform at the festival’s Free Community Concert on March 25.
This year, pupils from Bergvliet High School, Belhar High School, Hawston Catapult Foundation Music School, Pneumatix Performing Arts Academy and Worcester Senior Secondary School participated in the programme.
The programme also provided each school with a mentor to the pupils. This established artist attended the youngsters’ band rehearsals outside of the workshops.
The school which displays the most outstanding talent will be invited to perform at the next year’s Free Community Concert. Performing at this year’s concert will be the energetic band from Wynberg High School.
Produced by espAfrika, the award-winning Cape Town International Jazz Festival will take place on March 27 and 28 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC).
Now in its 21st year, it is renowned for delivering a star-studded line-up featuring international and local artists performing both jazz and popular music genres. A wide array of world-class artists will perform across multiple stages over the two nights.
For more information visit www.capetownjazzfest.com.