About Me

I ramble about a number of things - but travel experiences, movies and music feature prominently. See my label cloud for a better idea. All comnments and opinions on this blog are my own, and do not in any way reflect the opinions/position of my employer (past/current/future).

18 February 2012

Abdullah Ibrahim and the New South African Orchestra

A legend in the South African music scene, this was the first time I actually had the opportunity to attend a live performance. Playing with an 18 piece big band/orchestra, the concert featured a lot of his own compositions and some tributes to jazz legends. I say legends due to the reaction of a full house at the Linder Auditorium, since my own knowledge of Jazz is quite limited.

The contrast between jazz performances and classical performances I usually attend at the Linder is quite stark. For starters, applause and audience appreciation is not constrained by etiquette of waiting for the end of the piece. The performers also acknowledged a hearty applause with a short bow, while the rest of the band members carried on! The dress code of the performers is also relaxed - no tuxedos and ties to be seen, although most of the audience was a lot more dressed up!

The performance was mostly very lively and enjoyable. Abdullah Ibrahim was the MC, but he did tend to mumble a bit. The project, if I understood correctly was about making musical performances more accessible. In that sense, I don't think it was a great success. At R220 a ticket, it is far outside the reach of most people. Without a program an more information on the pieces themselves it is not easy to follow for non jazz followers.

It was still a great experience, and though I don't follow jazz a very enjoyable evening.

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