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April 04, 2010

George Benson thrills a sell-out crowd at the 2010 Cape Town International Jazz Festival

George Benson at the 2010 Cape Town International Jazz Festival

George Benson thrilled crowds at the Cape Town International Jazz Festival, photos by Deon Gurling

The stars were out in force last night, on the opening night of the 2010 Cape Town International Jazz Festival. The sold-out shows drew thousands to the Cape Town International Convention Centre, to see some of the world’s greatest jazz acts and musicians perform on numerous stages. The crowds also had the opportunity to take in an exhibition of breathtaking photographs of contemporary and bygone jazz artists at the Duotone Gallery.

Local stars including Judith Sephuma and Vusi Mahlasela had the crowd enraptured; with Sephuma’s silky-smooth voice belting out hit after hit, the appreciative crowd lapped up every moment. Later in the evening, guitar maestro Mahlasela’s fingers hypnotically worked the struts, sending the cramped auditorium into a frenzy with each note and chord. They, and other local acts, shared the stage with international jazz legend, George Benson, and local boy gone big, Jonathan Butler.

Jonathan Butler at the 2010 Cape Town International Jazz Festival

Jonathan Butler, a firm local favourite

It was the latter two artists whom the crowds had really come to see, and they did not disappoint. George Benson’s electrifying tribute to Nat King Cole was definitely a highlight of the day’s shows; he sang crowd favourites such as Mona Lisa and When I Fall in Love, but it was his own compositions that really got the crowd going.

Perennial favourite and local musician, Jonathan Butler, also had the crowd in the palm of his hand, as his fingers worked their magic playing hit after hit.

The two day festival ends tonight and will again see the great and the good of the world’s jazz artists taking to the stage, bringing to an end yet another successful event.

For more on the festival, you can browse the following stories:

Cape Town International Jazz Festival – a photo essay
Cape Town International Jazz Festival community concert
Cape Town International Jazz Festival community concert – a photo essay

 

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