This is an exciting week for Jazz enthusiasts, local artists and residents of Old Naledi as they host celebrated US jazz band, Anthony Stanco Ensemble courtesy of Bona Naledi in association with Sereetsi & the Natives and the US Speakers Arts Program. Residents will be treated to a free show on the 26th of June at Old Naledi grounds dubbed ‘Jazz in My Township’ featuring local folklore jazz artist Sereetsi and the Natives, Tshepo Lesole, Kabo Leburu alongside Anthony Stanco and the Crucial Elements.
“Jazz is a genre that is usually performed and appreciated in upmarket venues and not really in townships. So we decided to bring the music to Old Naledi for free so that people living here can also appreciate the genre because it spreads positive messages just like any other music genre. We have a star studded lineup that we are sure will pull crowds,” the Executive Director of Bona Naledi, Salim Ogodile told Time Out.
He said further; “This is a cultural exchange program between the American band and our local artists and we have a series of activities lined up. The program will be kick starting today (Tuesday 23rd) at Old Naledi Community Hall and will include a workshop for musicians on Thursday, a meet up with arts associations and related interest groups because we have realised that our local artists still fail to perform continentally and we want to share ideas and solutions. Currently we have 30 artists for the workshop including Mpho Sebina, La Timmy, Joseph from Mafitlhakgosi, Tomeletso Sereetsi, Euri, Almond Lereko, Suga and KZ among others and we also have 20 independent arts organisations.”
Anthony Stanco and The Crucial Elements is a jazz quintet comprised of some of the most promising young talents in jazz today. The musicians in the ensemble are Anthony Stanco (trumpet), Jordan Otto (drums), Marcus Elliot (saxophone), Paul Bratcher (piano) and Sam Copperman (acoustic bass) who are all graduates of Michigan State University. The ensemble is influenced by the history of jazz and draws from this to create their unique sound. Anthony Stanco Ensemble has performed at festivals, music clubs, and has conducted workshops and master classes. They have recently released their debut album entitled ‘The Crucial Elements’ and it has received international success. Their latest accomplishment has been representing the U.S Government’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. They’ve conducted two five-week tours in Southern Africa and the Middle East where they taught and performed for a variety of audiences. The Anthony Stanco and the Crucial Elements will be recording new music with some of our local artists which will be performed at the free show in Old Naledi.
“The Anthony Stanco Ensemble comprises of talented members who play different musical instruments. They will record music with Tomeletso Sereetsi before the show and they will perform the new songs to the audience,” Ogodile added.