Cash tills ring in change of track

Musa Ndwandwe

Musa Ndwandwe

In the biting cold of a Cape Town winter night, hundreds of youngsters are energetically mingling under the roof of a warehouse turned restaurant/club/bar.

Situated in Woodstock's lower Main Road, Amadoda is a place of many contradictions. Posters on the wall advertise it as an "upmarket" spot where elements of a lesser heritage are not welcome.

A casual glance at the attendance on the night , however, reveals a different picture.

All manner of revellers are at home here. The overwhelming majority are indeed students in their late teens and early 20s.

A sprinkling of big mamas and pot-bellied daddies are also represented. There's hardly a place to sit, so many of the revellers are on their feet most of the time.

Booze flows incessantly while the jollers' noise threatens to subdue the poor sound system that crackles over-rated house party favourites.

I feel sorry for the band of musicians who are waiting to serve the crowd their brand of live music as they linger on the sidelines until the resident DJ can fade off a local kwaito track.

They do not have monitors and the keyboard can hardly be heard above the hollering voices of the inebriated youngsters.

To their credit, though, the youthful crowd responds enthusiastically to the rendition of South African covers ranging from Brenda Fassie to Ezra Ngcukana's You Think You Know Me.

A queue akin to that of discontented Home Affairs customers is growing at the kitchen where braaied meat can be bought.

Next to the kitchen, less than motivated staff members are struggling to make sense of the orders for drinks.

Opened last year as a venue for gentlemen of stature to wind down the day, Amadoda appears to have completely lost the plot. Luckily for the proprietor, the tills look to be ringing.