Cape Town International Jazz Festival returns with a twist

Musician Judith Sephuma will be performing at the festival. Picture: Supplied

Musician Judith Sephuma will be performing at the festival. Picture: Supplied

Published Nov 4, 2022


Johannesburg - Jazzophiles, get your jazzy groove on and prepare for the 2023 Cape Town International Jazz Festival (CTIJF).

The esteemed event returns after a three-year involuntary hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The much-loved festival will take place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC).

The two-day music affair promises a fire line-up, including an appearance from South Africa’s Queen of Afro-jazz, Judith Sephuma. The “Mme Motswadi” (2005) and “Lerato La Pelo Ya Ka” (2008) singer said she was looking forward to performing at the festival.

“The event holds a special place in my heart. I'm so excited. I cannot wait. It is to take place from the 17 to the 18 of March next year,” she said.

Sephuma will be performing alongside local and international surprise acts that will pay homage to the festival’s past while still pointing toward the future. The surprise acts form part of the exciting new elements of the upcoming festival.

Unlike the previous years, for its 21st anniversary, more than 21 musical acts will take place on three stages available at the event. Each of these stages has a specific theme that will electrify the audience.

Jazz enthusiasts will appreciate the Rosie stage for its exceptional quality of sound that complements the artist’s musical instruments, whereas the Kippies stage would be reserved for the big names in the jazz industry. This stage will be located on the ground floor of the main hall.

The third and last stage, Downtown, aims to be a musical discovery stage for fresh sounds, artists, and jams. The three stages are not the only twist the festival has to offer.

Veteran festival director and well-known music executive Billy Domingo announced his departure from espAfrika, the company that oversees the festival.

Sending Domingo off to retirement with love, the event organisers revealed that the show's programming would be set in a way that honours Domingo’s passion for helping African artists and the CTIJF's reputation as a place for international exchange.

Amit Makan, the newly appointed chief executive of espAfrika, said the event had become a showcase for South African artists' unique skill and star power while also giving locals a chance to see international musicians they may not otherwise have the opportunity to witness.

“Growing this brand and taking it forward into the next phase of its success is a challenge, one I relish, even with these interesting times we live in now. It is music artists, like the sublime Judith Sephuma, who has today lent her considerable support to this next event, whom I wish to thank, as they make what we do pleasant and worthwhile," said Makan.

Makan gave gratitude to Sephuma and other artists who would be performing at the festival. He said there would be no festival for the fans to enjoy without the contribution of these artists.

Tickets to the festival cost R750 per person for a day pass and R1200 per person for a weekend pass, with an R30 additional cost to ensure seating in the Rosie stage.