Cape Town named host city of 2020 International Jazz Day

American jazz singer and four-times Grammy Award winner last year graced the International Jazz Day.
American jazz singer and four-times Grammy Award winner last year graced the International Jazz Day.
Image: Moeletsi Mabe

Fresh from hosting another successful edition of the Cape Town International Jazz Festival a few weeks ago, the Mother City has been named next year's host city for International Jazz Day, which takes place annually on April 30.

The organisers revealed on Tuesday that the next year's celebrations will be centred on the theme “Tracing the roots and routes of African jazz”.

“We’re excited to share with the world in 2020 the type of jazz experience that shows the integration [of the arts], but also an experience that goes into our past - particularly our continental and national heritage,” said Motsumi Makhene of the Spin Foundation, which will organise the event.

The programme will include markets, workshops, clinics and a concert featuring international jazz musicians. The events will also focus on the historical links between slavery and jazz.

“Jazz is an intangible part of African history,” said executive director Brenda Sisane. “This is how we sell South African music, identity and uniqueness to the world.”

The festivities are expected to bring at least 10,000 jazz lovers to Cape Town, with another billion people participating in related events around the world. The Castle of Good Hope has been named as a possible venue.

“This is the people’s music and they can enjoy it in many different ways and locations and styles,” said Sisane.

This year’s celebrations for International Jazz Day will be held in Sydney, Australia.


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