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DURBAN ARTS LUNCH HOUR CONCERTS (article first published : 2003-04-6)

Free lunch-hour concerts take place on the City Hall Steps every Wednesday from 12h45 to 14h00. The programme is varied and includes gospel, reggaie, jazz, maskanda and isicathamiya styles. A curtain raiser slot of up and coming artists will precede the main attraction of the day. (Report presented by Patrick Zungu of the Durban Arts Association)

April 2: Curtain Raiser: Moon of Africa – Poetry. Main Event: uMshikaShika – Mas’kandi. This group was formed by Dumisani Samuel Qwabe, who was born on November 11, 1962. He plays the guitar and most of his fans call him Mshikashika. He got his maskandi influence from his grandfather, who he says was the best concertina player he has known. Presenting his own particular style of guitar playing, he writes his own music. This group is well known in the greater Durban area and have performed at the BAT Centre, Playhouse, Durban City Hall and Vuma Arts Centre.

April 9: Curtain Raiser: Mngenge – Solo. Main Event: Sound of Africa – Gospel. Sound of Africa was formed by Roy Xolo and Bongani Mkhize on April 14, 1999 near KwaMgaga at the Zinhlezonke Community Project. They performed at the indoor centre where Mrs Mavundla saw them and she asked if she could manage the group. Since this management the group has progressed fast. They went to auditions at Okhozini FM held by Sam Shabalala, who said that they should return for a second audition, which they did and they passed. They entered the Ithala Bank Competition and came second. They also entered the Senzenje Competition and also came second at provincial level. They have performed at the Playhouse and the City Hall steps.

April 16: Curtain Raiser: John Mthetwa – Dance Music. Main Event: Ithemba Lethu - Maskanda A Maskanda group led by Musa Chamane.

April 23: Curtain Raiser: J P Gumede – Gospel. Main Event: Zwakala - The group was previously known as Second Touch. The name changed as the band decided to change its music trend from R&B to Afro Fusion. The band consists of five members, all based in Clermont. They are Welcome Mgagule (Founder) on synthesizer; Lucky Gidigidi on piano; Magiza Shane on bass; Thanana Shange on guitar and Thabane Luthuli on drums. Since the band’s establishment in 1999, Zwakala has appeared in various reputable venues, such as the Bat Centre, Rainbow Restaurant (where they are currently performing every Thursday and Friday), Rivets Bar and Restaurant at the I.C.C., Jubilee Hall at the University of Natal, the Art Gallery at the City Hall and many more places. Zwakala features various artists like the great Malkia Group led by Makhosi Mbatha and individual or solo vocalists like Zama Nxumalo and Nokuthula Zulu.

April 30: Curtain Raiser: M.V. - Kwaito. Main Event: Heroes of Faith - Gospel




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