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Special Price: R50 for all patrons who were born between 1950 and 1959
Offer From: 25 - 29 May 2012
To Book: Anthony on 083 246 4950 email or Tiny on 082 564 3452 email

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Kwela Bafana+

25 May 2012 - 24 Jun 2012

Venue: Main Theatre
Duration: 90 minutes no interval
Age Restriction: 6


Following sold-out performances at the Victory Theatre last year, Kwela Bafana+ is once again about to take Jozi by storm. Starting 25 May, put on your most fabulous dancing shoes and head for the Market Theatre, where Bra B Ngwenya and the Kwela Bafana Band will get your feet tapping to the vibrant tunes r
eminiscent of South African townships in the 50s.

A distinctive style of music was born from the shabeen scene in the 1950s. It was funky and audacious and could liven up a dance floor in a moment. It was also layered with innuendo as it descriptively portrayed township life during an era in the country when people were faced with apartheid’s ugliness, which included the devastation of forced removals. To survive these adverse times, music became an escape and, although it was often uplifting, the undertones of tragedy and fear were always evident. The hauntingly evocative penny-whistle or “kwela” – meaning “get up” or “kwela kwela” describing the police vans - was made famous through kwela music during these times. It was this fabulous 50’s street music, with its magical jazzy undertones, which had revellers living up the night life inside the noisy walls of the shabeens, where kwela sounds, non-stop action and the never-ending flow of beer kept people’s hopes and dreams alive.

Kwela Bafana+, A Night in a 50’s Shabeen, is an engaging musical, which brings to life the unforgettable sights and sounds of South Africa during a decade known for producing a distinctive flavour in song and dance. Directed by renowned Sibikwa Art Centre founders Phyllis Klotz and Smal Ndaba, with musical direction by the multi-talented Themba Mkhize - who has among his many accolades arranged and composed the music for both the Confederation and World Cup - and choreography by the internationally-acclaimed Todd Twala, Kwela Bafana+ will warm the hearts of an eclectic and multicultural audience.

Boy Ngwenya, an original member of the Woodywood Peckers and the famous King Kong cast, brings authentic 50’s flair and personality to his performance. Audiences can look forward to the award-winning talents of actress Velephi Khumalo, who has, in previous Kwela productions, become one of the shows biggest attractions. Khumalo is a “tour de force” to be reckoned and brings some seriously powerful vocal talents to her performance.This fabulous musical theatre features songs from the classic, King Kong, Victor Ndlazilwane of the Woodywood Peckers and Dambuza Mdledle of the Manhattan Brothers.

The magic of Kwela Bafana+ will be presented from 25th May – 24th June 2012, at the Market Theatre. Tuesday to Saturday at 8pm and Matinee on Sunday at 3pm. For block booking please contact Audience Development Department at the Market Theatre on 011-832 1641 or Anthony on 083 246 4950 Email: or Tiny E-mail: Make your booking now!!!!

“Music that sustained life…” - Kgomotso Moncho, The Star
“Joburg’s hottest, slickest musical…” - Christine Kennedy, Business Day
“A musical journey that will leave you dancing and wanting more…” - Gwen Ansell, Business Day

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Show Reviews

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50’s Shebeen Style
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