Juluka to wow Australia

Patience Bambalele

Patience Bambalele

Seasoned singer Johnny Clegg, whose career has enjoyed both local and international accolades, is flying off to Australia and New Zealand on May 19.

Clegg, who made a name for himself as the first white man to sing maskandi music, will have five shows in Australia and one in New Zealand.

The singer kicks off his tour at the PCEC Riverside Theatre in Perth on May 21 and moves to Palais Theatre in Melbourne on May 25.

On May 26 he will be at the Sydney State Theatre, while on May 28 he will be at QPAC in Brisbane. He wraps the Australia tour at St James Opera Hall in Wellington on May 30.

In New Zealand, he will have a single performance on June 1 at the Auckland Town Hall. As usual, Glegg will dazzle theatre lovers with his life story as a white man learning an African traditional music style such as maskandi.

His show follows the history of one particular dance which became widely used in the Juluka and Savuka periods. The show includes all of Clegg's classic repertoire as well as work from his One Life album.

His show comprises high-energy Zulu dance routines and classic Clegg, Juluka and Savuka hits such as Impi, Scatterlings of Africa and Asimbonanga. The hits will be interspersed with newer material, resulting in a show that's distinctly South African and immensely entertaining.

During a career spanning more than 30 years, Clegg has had an indelible impact on not only South African music, but world music in general through his efforts to foster an awareness and appreciation of indigenous sounds on the global stage.

He defied the segregation laws of the time to forge a hybrid of Western Pop and Zulu musical structures that, to this day, strikes a chord with audiences of all hues.