The South African Jazz Appreciators Association(SAJAA) and iTheku Regional Jazz Association are proud to announce the 2nd Annual Imbokodo Jazz Festival to commemorate, celebrate and promote Female Jazz artists during Women's Month.
Sibongile Khumalo is the most celebrated member of a musical dynasty, marked by an extraordinary vocal gene-pool and passion for making music. She was born and grew up in Orlando West, Soweto. Her parents, Mrs Grace and Prof. Khabi Mngoma, were cultural workers and arts activists, involved in the upliftment of the communities in which they lived. They instilled in her an abiding love and appreciation for music education and for South African music and culture. Through her father’s influence, she developed her singing talents which range from opera to jazz and choral music, always grounded by the traditional and folk musics of South Africa.
An award winning musician, she has been lauded as one of the great singing talents of her time, and has inspired the creation of new music by South African composers, both in the classical art song, opera as well as jazz genres. Khumalo has music degrees from the University of Zululand and Wits University, and an Honorary Licentiate in Music from the University of South Africa. She has qualified with a Post-Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management from Wits Business School. She has been conferred with honorary doctorates by Rhodes University (D. Mus-Honoris Causa,) the University of Zululand (D.Phil-Honoris Causa), and the University of South Africa (D.Musicology-Honoris Causa). She is a Fellow of the Africa Leadership Initiative (ALI), an Africa-wide collective of leaders interested in developing a cohort of values-based leadership. She has performed at numerous prestigious venues abroad, and has appeared at every major theatre and jazz festival in South Africa. Some of her most memorable roles include Carmen (Carmen), Amneris (Aida), Azucena (Il Trovatore), The Witch (Hansel und Gretel), Ulrica (Un Ballo in Maschera), Princess Magogo (Princess Magogo ka Dinuzulu). Khumalo has sung in a variety of oratorios, including the Verdi and Mozart Requiems. Mzilikazi Khumalo wrote some of the arias in the epic poem UShaka ka Senzangakhona with her voice in mind, and the songcycle Haya Mntwan’ Omkhulu, a cycle of eight of Princess Magogo’s songs, was commissioned for her.
With her first love being the stage, she has not only performed in a variety of music shows and musicals, she has co-created, directed the music of, and produced stage performances, including the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations. Khumalo has been an adjudicator and Jury member for various choral and singing competitions and festivals, including the UNISA International Voice competition as well as the SAMRO International Singing Competition, usually acting as a dual Jury member for both the Classical music and Jazz categories. Among her many accolades for her stage and recorded work, including four South African Music Awards (SAMA), a South African Traditional Music Award (SATMA) and a Vita Award for her classical and opera work, Khumalo has been bestowed with a Lifetime Achievement award by the Naledi Theatre awards. She reprised her 1993 breakout performance called “The 3 Faces Of Sibongile Khumalo” in a triune of performances called “More Than 3 Faces”, at her 60th Birthday celebrations in 2017. She holds the National Order of Ikhamanga in Silver (OIS), by Order of the President of South Africa, in recognition of her contribution to the advancement within arts and culture.
This singer-songwriter-producer is an ardent proponent for Arts Education. She is the Founding-Trustee of the Khabi Mngoma Foundation Trust whose primary aim is to provide support for the Khongisa Academy for the Performing Arts. She is also the current Deputy Chairman of the Southern African Music Rights Organisation (SAMRO). Khumalo mentors young performers, with a focus on self-awareness and the spiritual essence of the creative personality, restoration and healing. A consummate professional, Khumalo is not only a household name in South Africa, she is recognised wherever she goes, spreading vocal magic, warmth and passion to young and old alike. Mixing silk, silver and earth in magical combinations, her artistry is massive, glorious and multi-faceted.
Born and raised in Port Elizabeth, Nomfundo is a 2 x Metro FM Music Award winner who began her musical training at the age of 12 with classical piano. She holds a Master’s Degree in Jazz Studies (Voice & Dissertation) from UCT in 2009, where she graduated Cum Laude (with Distinction). For her Master's Degree she wrote a dissertation on the music of Mama Africa titled The Analysis of the Musical Style of Miriam Makeba.
Both a performer and educator, Nomfundo was invited as an artist in residence at the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music where she also performed in a concert commemorating the role of music in the Apartheid struggle. She has also attended the Norsk Jazz Forum in Norway to partake in a summer school. As an educator, she headed the Vocal Department at the prestigious Cape Academy of Performing Arts for 5 years ending in 2015. She has also taught vocals at the Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Festival and is often invited as an external examiner at UCT’s College of Music for Jazz Singing recitals.
Nomfundo serves on the Board of the SAMRO Foundation whose interest is vested in the development and funding of arts education as well as nurturing the vibrant music scene in South Africa. As a performer, Nomfundo cites opening for her icon Miss Diane Reeves in 2011 a major highlight among many. She made her debut performances at the Std Bank Joy of Jazz Festival in 2016 as well as at the Joburg Arts Alive Festival in 2015. Her discography includes her 2x Metro FM Music Award winning albums Kusile and From.Now.On (Best Urban Jazz) released under Universal Music in 2013 and 2015 respectively. Other awards include; Wawela Music Award for Best Female Artist/Composer 2015; Arts and Culture Trust impact Award for Music & Singing 2014. She has been nominated for; Mbokodo Awards for Women in Jazz 2015; South African Afro Music Award for Best Jazz Album. Nomfundo made her debut performance at the Cape Town International Jazz Festival on the 1st April 2017 to critical acclaim.
Born with a Talent that was soon to be discovered, Mimi started performing at a very tender age. She is blessed with an incontestable talent to beat many of her age. Asked when she started singing? “At church like many others she said and the fact that music was an ever pervading presence in my home”. Highly acclaimed young South Africa’s Jazz vocalist/Composer/Lyricist
Mimi originates from Boksburg, Ekurhuleni. She had found her natural niche and pursued her Music Education through UCT completing her Jazz Performance Degree. It was during her time there when she performed excellently that her career started taking off. Her astonishing vocal abilities paved way for her and she found herself sharing the world big stages with the likes of Sibongile Khumalo, Judith Sephuma, Jimmy Dludlu, Themba Mkhize; To name just a few at home; She has also proudly shared the stage with Big names Internationally including; Khadja Nin, Rita Marley, Joe McBride and Lauryn Hill. The songstresses more anticipates debut album named “Essence Of My Soul”, came at no better time after gaining good accolades from performances around the world and after having worked with incredible amount of talent including being a part of quite amazing groups like; Tucan Tucan, UCT Philharmonic Orchestra, Mamavox, SAFRA Jazz Band consisting of women from France and South Africa. The award winning album boasts sounds loaded with warm tunes, beautiful melodies (including songs Uthando Luphelile, Africa Hlanganani/Unido wich is partly written in Portuguese and possess
deep African/Latin sounds, Goodbye Loneliness with brazed the local and some International
air waves for sometime) and remarkable vocal talent.
This young overly talented songstress will be often seen on big stages singing assorted Jazz. Incredible selection of songs, Classics from the repertoire of the most terrific singers of the 20th Century; Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan. This time given a modern and a wonderful twist, with beautiful arrangements that swing and amazing execution of the ballads. Mimi is simply an embodiment of a “Prodigy” in the Jazz Scene following incredibles like Miriam Makeba, Caiphus Semenya, Hugh Masekela. Such prodigious talent see an incontestable standard to South African
NQOBILE MCHUNU aka TALIE MONIN
Multi award-winning vocalist Nqobile Mchunu or Talie Monin (as she is known in the jazz world) was born in Durban, South Africa, of Zulu heritage, and raised in the culturally rich city of Johannesburg.
Her music career began at an early age when she sang along to the music her father loved and played around the home, including a wide range of artists from Pat Metheny, Yellowjackets, Ivan Lins, Earth Wind and Fire, Michael Franks, Salif Keita, and other premier artists of the 70s and 80s all the way back to the classic jazz vocal era of Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn and Billie Holiday.
At the age of 16, Talie took up the serious study of vocal jazz after winning a major talent contest in South Africa. In 2005, she overcame a highly competitive field of singers to emerge as finalist in the prestigious ‘Yamaha Vocal Competition’ in Johannesburg.
Talie later studied jazz vocal training at the American School of Modern Music in Paris in 2009 and was accepted at the highly regarded Sarah Lazarus Vocal Atelier at Bill Evans Piano Academy in Paris in 2011.
Since moving to Hong Kong with her husband in 2014, Talie Monin has enjoyed a stellar career singing contemporary jazz, Brazilian and world music across Asia. She is a first-call vocalist at numerous live venues and enjoys a busy career as a studio singer as well.
In 2017, Talie performed at the prestigious Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland and there won the ‘Audience Choice Award’from Shure.
She cites her African homeland as well as the rhythms and music of Brazil as major influences on how she sings. At the same time she remains a serious student of the Great American Songbook and the singers and songwriters that brought that music to life.
Current Professional Performance Venues in Hong Kong:
-Orange Peel Jazz Club
Fezile was born in New Brighton, Port Elizabeth, a town often referred to as a Jazz Academy that brought forth a great number of jazz musicians. This accomplished musician studied music at University of Natal with Darius Bareback and graduated with a University Diploma in Jazz Studies. While at university Faku studied classical trumpet with a French trumpet teacher Michel Schnewly.
He has performed with a great number of South African musician legends- From Barney Rachabane, Thandie Classen, Duke Makasi, Pat Matshikiza, Basel Coetzee, Winston ‘Mankunku’ Ngozi and Bheki Mseleku to Abdullah Ibrahim. For several years he has been working with Paul van Kemenade Quintet in the Netherlands and in April 2006 he spent a two-months’ residency programme in Switzerland teaching and performing with the Swiss-South African Quintet which he co-leads with the legendary Makhaya Ntshoko. Feya has also worked with great international musicians like Dave Young, Gustavo Begalli, Larry Ridley, Colin Vallon, Andy Sherrer, Paul van Kemenade, Eric van der Western, Brice Wassy, Malcom Braff, Samuel Blaser, Frederic Ljungkvist, Paul Hanmmer, Mcoy Mrubata, to name just a few.
Hommage ( Challenge Records )
Tacit ( Msi/ Emi )
The Colours They Bring ( Feya Faku Music )
Hope and Honour ( Feya Faku Music )
With Various Artists:
African Tributes ( Natal university connection )
Art Gecko ( Counterculture )
Township one more time ( Abdullah Ibrahim )
Cape Town revisited ( Abdullah Ibrahim )
Best of Abdullah Ibrahim
Home at last ( Bheki Mseleku )
We used to dance ( Andile Yenana )
Who lyk uit ( MCoy Mrubata )
Molo Africa ( Winston Mankunku Ngozi )
Before it’s too late ( Darius Brubeck )
Out of the shack ( SA- Swedish Micro jazz encounter )
Zvinoshamisa ( Paul Van Kemenade Quintet )
Maxi Cossy ( Paul Van Kemenade Quintet )