And all that Jazz - Swiss/SA collaborations

Pro Helvetia Cape Town, Swiss Arts Council
06/12/2013 12:39:45

Two enchanting Swiss/South African jazz collaborations will tour Southern Africa during the National Arts Festival season.


MBT is a trio centred around the Switzerland based pianist Malcolm Braff. Many musicians master their technical genre and their instrument to perfection, but there are only few who go beyond that with their unique individuality. With him, the piano keyboard sounds as if it is an extension of himself. He has created his own world on this instrument. His improvisations are sensual power plays and delicate contemplative masterpieces in one. Whether gospel-like or Coltrane-inspired, he sounds the depths and shallows of quasi magical-religious knowledge of rhythms and harmony.

The Malcolm Braff Trio is a fluid concept, with accompanying musicians changing over time, but always of a high calibre, complimentary to that of Braff's. For the South African tour, Braff is joined by acclaimed artists, Shane Cooper on double bass and Kesivan Naidoo on drums.

Cooper is a bassist, composer and producer based in Cape Town. He recently launched his quintet and has a new album titled ‘Oscillations’, due for release in July 2013. He was a member of the groups Babu (SAMA Nominee) and Closet Snare, and continues to work with the Kyle Shepherd Trio (SAMA Nominee) and the Reza Khota Quartet. He has recently been chosen as the winner for Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Jazz 2013.

After winning the Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz 2009, Kesivan Naidoo launched the ‘The Lights’, a band that brings together some of his favourite musicians, both local and international. Their debut performance was hosted at the National Arts Festival 2009 and the following year the band went on to record ‘The Instigators of the Revolution’. The album is a tribute to some of the great jazz musicians that have influenced Naidoo’s musical journey, among these Winston Mankunku, Bheki Mseleku and John Coltrane.


JWQ, features again Shane Cooper and Kesivan Naidoo, as they provide the rhythm section for Swiss musicians Marc Stucki (tenor sax) and Andreas Tschopp (trombone). Stucki is a sought-after sideman, working with a range of styles including pop, rock and jazz. Andreas Tschopp is also much in demand as a freelancer and played with, among others, Mats Spilmann, Colin Vallon, Dominik Egli and the Quincy Jones Big Band. JWQ is the result of musical collaborations between South African and Swiss musicians at the JazzWerkstatt Festival 2012 in Berne. The quartet plays original compositions and uses these as a vehicle for their excursions into modern jazz improvisation.

The coming together of various musicians continues in a series of other collaborations at the National Arts Festival in July. JWQ will play alongside Cape Town pianist and composer Kyle Shepherd, described as one of the chief architects of modern Cape Jazz. Further collaborations include the Awesome Big Band – one of the sell-out trademarks of the Jazz Festival – a unique selection of top international jazz musicians in a standard Big Band format as well as the International Collaboration Band, aka Rhythm Changing.

Malcolm Braff Trio & JazzWerkstatt Quartet
Saturday 22 June | 20h00
Mahogany Room, 79 Buitenkant St, Cape Town

Malcolm Braff Trio & JazzWerkstatt Quartet
Sunday 23 June | 18h00
The Music Room | 8th floor University Corner | Wits University | Jorrisen Street

Malcolm Braff Trio & JazzWerkstatt Quartet
Tuesday 25 June | 19h00
House On Fire

28 June | JazzWerkstatt Quartet with Kyle Shepherd
DSG Hall | 19h30

29 June | Malcolm Braff Trio
DSG Hall | 17h00

29 and 30 June | Marc Stucki with the Awesome Big Band

30 June | Malcolm Braff with International Collaboration Band, aka Rhythm Changing

Pro Helvetia will also be supporting Yann Marrusich at the National Arts Festival as well as the Novel-Script Project.

The Novel-Script project brings together script-writers from South Africa, Zimbabwe and the Netherlands for an exciting 10-day writing workshop. Using a common novel as a starting point, these writers create scenes that are brought to life by a group of talented actors and directors.

Public script reading on 28 June - (Venue TBC)

For more information contact / 011 403 1880. Account:
Thandi Luzuka
078 298 4969
Pro Helvetia
Related Event:
National Arts Festival
Dates: Wednesday, 26th June 2019 - Sunday, 7th July 2019