Musician passes away

Tumi Sebusi

Tumi Sebusi

Vaal South Sotho flautist, vocalist, choir master and composer Albert Grant Kekana collapsed in church on Sunday.

He was conducting the choir at the Word Centre Ministries in Residensia. He was rushed to a private hospital where he was certified dead on arrival.

Ntate Kekana touched many lives. His sudden and unexpected death has left the Vaal community shocked.

The mentor and community builder was born at the Robinson Deep mine in Johannesburg on July 22 1933.

He went to Johannesburg's Albert Street Primary School, completed his Junior Certificate at Pretoria's Kilnerton training college in 1951 and received his higher teacher's certificate in 1953.

He married Dolly Jane Kekana, with whom he had two children, Peter and Quincy.

In 1954 he taught at Lady Selbourne Methodist School. He later worked as a clerk at the Yorkshire Insurance Company in Johannesburg.

Two years later he left and started teaching at Makapane Bantu School in Vanderbijlpark. In 1962 he was transferred to Phahamang Community School.

His love of music saw him join the Jazz Today Group in 1955.

Kekana's first break as a soloist came when he won a national talent contest in 1958. Five years later he won the vocal section at a jazz festival. The prize was R75.

He taught music at schools and studied the theory of music at the Johannesburg Music School.

In 2004 he established a project for orphans in Ward Road in Evaton. Until his death, he was an active member of the Evaton Development Forum.

He is survived by his wife, three children and seven grandchildren.

A service will be held on April 8 at Mphatlalatsane Hall, Zone 14, Sebokeng, from 9am.