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“The intricate polyrhythmic groove laid down by the rhythm sections allowed the warm tone of Dyantyis’s trumpet to create effervescent melodic ideas.”

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What is striking, when listening to these young men and women hit impossible notes with sniper-like perfection, is the depth of South African talent that is being developed.

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To an audio backdrop which includes excerpts from a speech by Malcolm X contrasting the worlds of “House Negros” and “Field Negros”, the group presented a passionate depiction of the effect of Western influence on African traditions.

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Dusty Rebels and the Bombshells is the quintessence of rockabilly, an alternative subculture that brings the 50s greaser culture into the 21st century. To completely oversimplify, it’s what Grease would have looked like if a Suicide Girl was cast as Sandy instead of Olivia Newton John and the backtracks were scrapped in favour of a swinging rock/blues band.

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This fantastic band, a regular in the Kirstenbosch Summer Concert Series lineup, could easily play in a far bigger venue to a crowd triple the size, but the fact that their fans are given the chance to hear them in such an intimate environment only makes the experience more memorable. There were a few sound glitches at the beginning, but like any true musical legends they laughed them off and carried on. Playing hits including ‘She Knows’ and ‘Time of Your Life’, the band easily transported us all into another world.

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we are treated to solos that include the iconic Bournonville jumps and stylised arms as well as colourful, high energy group numbers into which Bournonville ingeniously infused elements of Highland dancing giving these scenes a fun folky feel. The fast and intricate footwork is performed in perfect unison by the cast, and though the spacing and lines could be sharper in the transitions between shapes, the timing and musicality is on point.

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The choir produced a beautifully warm and balanced sound, supported by the instrumentalists who blended well with the voices, even when occasionally being overshadowed by the sheer number of singers. At certain moments the reed-like timbre of the organ complimented the tenor voices perfectly.

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With his relentless busyness on stage and his child-like inability to keep still, the audience can sense the aggravation of Ivan. The way in this disturbance manifests in human form is handled with a subtle dark humour through Buckland’s exemplary comedic timing and his extraordinarily expressive physical comedy skills.

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The quality of dancing is truly impressive considering most of the dancers don’t dance vocationally and the result is testament to the passion and hard work that has been put in by Botha and Zoutman to ensure the high standard of the work being performed. They haven’t held back in their choreography either, challenging the dancers technically and artistically with a stylized and often complex movement vocabulary.

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Despite a subject matter that still carries a lot of raw memories for many, Follow Spot productions has whipped up a very special show starring the amazing Pierre van Heerden (The Rocky Horror Show, Chicago).

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Dragging 30 suffers from a broken narrative, but it’s hilarious entertainment nevertheless and the actors really come alive during the musical performances.

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“Each specimen in this extraordinary exhibition was once a human being who gave express permission for his or her body to be displayed to the public. “

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Morning Tea and Afternoon Tea have become so popular that the Mount Nelson has now responded to requests for an Evening Tea. It’s scheduled from 6pm to 8:30pm, but because it’s at the end of the day, guests have a chance to linger long after. The Evening Tea puts greater emphasis on savoury snacks, but still offers a substantial dessert, and is priced at R 295 per person.

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We were still at the polo farm* and the unaccustomed exercise along with the heat and the wine were beginning to make me hallucinate. At one point I could have sworn I saw Baroness Thatcher slip into the house behind us. And yet… that unmistakeable hair, the power suit, the pair of sensible yet elegant heels disappearing through the door… I moved a little closer and could hear a distinctly low-pitched, enunciated voice giving orders. Surely it couldn’t be? [Read more…]

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“Sandra Prinsloo plays Martins, bringing to her character a naiveté of life with a passion for the one thing that filled her with joy: her art.”

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“This year, with Fokofpolisiekar and Mango Groove as headliners, the line-up selection seemed like a soft attempt to appeal to a broader crowd.”

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Nutini’s boyish allure along with his bluesy voice made every song a tantalising experience. The backup singer and drummer, despite being new on stage with Nutini, were absolutely on point, and the band as a whole created an overall sound that was nothing if not elegant, complimenting Nutini as he poured out his soul.

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This versatile young honours student – also a composer, arranger, session musician, teacher and conductor for the Wynberg Girl’s High School Jazz Band – was holding a fund-raising concert to pay off her baritone saxophone .

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The clear highlights were the portraits, both for me and for Joseph. He loved picking out the blue highlights of the skin and seeing how the red of the lips might be the same colour as her hat or as a flower on her dress.

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For those who have never heard of Flanders and Swann, you are not alone. As old-style musical hall entertainers their music is unlikely to be found on the average iPod. But their songs are as relevant and witty today as they were in their heyday of the 1950s and 60s.

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Yes, there are moments of real corniness, but the general reaction of the audience on opening night was to greet these moments with cheers rather than jeers, the dance on the log and the lift in the water in particular being met with happy laughter from the audience as the characters acted behind a screen projection.

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He came with a selection of new jokes and also recycled a few old ones which were still a winner with the audience. Everyday things we barely consider McIntyre has the ability to pin down and magnify to magnificent proportions of silliness – a recipe for success.

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Situated on the grounds of Constantia Nek Restaurant, it comprises a series of ropes, ladders, swings and nets that offer an aerial obstacle course in a small glade of tall bluegum trees, with platforms up to eight metres above the ground, and zipwires up to 60m long.

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