Milton van Wyk is the current head of the music library at De Munt Opera in Brussels. His duties include mediating between conductors and management regarding the choice of score editions, preparing scores for performance, and establishing a digital archive of past performances.
Born in Cape Town he studied piano with Helena van Heerden at the College of Music, University of Cape Town, after which he taught at various high schools on the Cape Flats before immigrating to Belgium in 2001. In Belgium he held various teaching and administrative jobs before being employed in his current function.
In order to retain links with South Africa he embarked on further music studies at the University of South Africa under the tutelage of Niel Geldenhuys, George King, and Marc Duby. His studies included a biography of musician Robbie Jansen for his BMus (Hons) research paper and a biography of Basil ‘Mannenberg’ Coetzee for his MMus thesis. His primary interest is life stories.
Milton’s PhD research is a historiography of the Golden City Dixies, a carnival troupe conceptualised in Johannesburg in the early 1950s. After a series of ‘farewell concerts’ primarily organised as fundraisers, the Golden City Dixies eventually left South Africa for a tour of Europe in 1959. After moderate success in the United Kingdom and Ireland they set sail for Scandinavia where ten of the twenty members applied for political asylum effectively ending the Dixies tour. On returning home the Golden City Dixies regrouped but died a premature death partly a result of apartheid regulations governing freedom of movement and performance restriction. The exiled Golden City Dixies were only allowed to return to South Africa after 1990.
His supervisor is Paula Fourie.
Felicia Lesch holds a BMus (Ed) degree from the University of Cape Town and a MMus from Stellenbosch University (SU). The title of her thesis for her MMus was: The Certificate Programme in Music: A Means of Broadening Access to Higher Music Education Studies at The University of Stellenbosch. This research underpins her daily work at the music department at Stellenbosch University, where she heads the Unit for Community Music (UCM).
Felicia is also passionate about jazz education, and some of her highlights include being selected to conduct the National Schools Big Band at the Standard Bank National Youth jazz festival in Grahamstown in 2009. She directs the University of Stellenbosch Jazz Band (USJB), who were the category and overall winners of the National Ensemble competition in 2012. This band was part of a production which won the award for best performance in the open-air category of the Kyknet Fiestas in 2018.
The band’s highlights include performances at Woordfees, Oude Libertas Summer Concert Series, and the Cape Town Jazz Band Festival at the Baxter, as well as benefit concerts for community partners in Steenberg, Mitchells Plain and Athlone. Prominent soloists who have appeared with this band include performances with Sibongile Khumalo, Amanda Strydom, Corlea Botha, Judith Sephuma, Gloria Bosman and Timothy Moloi.
In 2011, she was part of a committee who were responsible for the creation and implementation of the Higher Certificate in Music and the Diploma in Practical Music at the music department at SU. Other highlights of her career at SU include the Rector’s Award for Excellence (2010 and 2014), appearing as a speaker at the Social Impact conference at SU in 2017, and at the SU Library Week, speaking about how her work impacted her research for the Masters’ degree. Felicia has presented papers at Sasrim conferences in 2015 and 2016. She is a member of the board of Directors of the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra and has served as an adjudicator for various Eisteddfodau and cultural festivals. These include the Unisa Gr 8 scholarship competition (2009), the Tygerberg and Afrikaans Eisteddfods (2011; 2013; 2014, 2016), the Cape Malay Choir Competition, the Samro Overseas Scholarship Competition (2012; 2013), and the Hubert van der Spuy Competition (2012). As a recent member of the Fiësta panel, she adjudicates festivals such as KKNK, Aardklop, and Innibos, amongst others.
She is passionate about music as a vehicle for social change and remains deeply committed to those ideals.
Inge Engelbrecht is a part-time lecturer at the Music Department at Stellenbosch University. She obtained her BMus and HonsBMus (music education) degrees at SU and now lectures in the bridging Certificate in Music Programme. She completed her master’s degree (cum laude) in March 2017. Her master’s research focused on documenting the life and works of three composers who have strong ties to Genadendal, the first mission station in South Africa.
“To acknowledge the sound of coloured people’s voices raised in song [is] an integral part of the very diverse and varied entity known collectively as ‘South African music’”. (Jorritsma, 2011).
The Afrikaans koortjie (little chorus) can be viewed as a vehicle for spiritual and cultural expression for certain groups and individuals of a specific cultural group in South Africa. The koortjie tradition is part of the cultural narrative of the coloured church community and is a largely unexplored field of research. It is an area of music scholarship that Inge is undertaking to establish the Afrikaans koortjie as the focus of her research–an exemplary instance of orally transmitted racial music in the coloured community–an instance that will allows the broader coloured community to create for themselves a rightful place in the musical panorama of South African oral history and culture.
Danell Müller (Herbst) is lecturer in Music Education, Teaching Practice and Aural Training at the Department of Music, Stellenbosch University.
She completed her BMus studies (cum laude) in 2006 at North-West University, Potchefstroom where she specialized in Music Theory & Piano Methodology. Her final year dissertation, supervised by Hannes Taljaard, proposed an integrated approach to music theory instruction material. In 2011 she received her MMus degree (cum laude) in Music Theory Instruction & Music Education from North-West University, Potchefstroom under supervision of Hetta Potgieter and Seugnet Blignaut.
Danell is actively involved in Social Impact initiatives in Cloetesville at ATKV AbbaSorg and Rietenbosch Primary School. In 2013 she and social entrepreneur Andreas Claassens established The Moment Social Mobility Programme. This programme is aligned with the NDP and addresses 16 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (also known as the Global Goals) and provide opportunity for Engaged Learning and Teaching, Engaged Research, Engaged Citizenship and Social Interaction.
The provisional title for her research is ‘Staging the future: an auto-ethnographic account of how an annual school concert cultivates artistic citizenship’. In this research she will investigate how basic music activities in an underprivileged school environment could foster Artistic Citizenship and will also aim to explore the Self-Determination Theory as a pedagogical approach to music that shapes social relations and structures.
Pierre-Henri Wicomb, a South African composer, completed a Masters Degree in composition at the University of Cape Town and Post Graduate studies at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague and is currently working on his PhD at the institute Africa Open realising an Opera underpinned by the superimposition of two dyadic practices: psychoanalysis and music composition.Wicomb is an acoustic composer, but also working in the field of electroacoustic music, which focusses on his experimentations with MIDI. Wicomb’s music has featured at the Festival D’Automne (Paris), New York City Electronic Music Festival (New York), International Computer Music Conference (ICMC, Utrecht), Avignon Festival, Forum Wallis 2013 and 2014 (Leuk, Switzerland), Wilde Bloesem series in Amsterdam, Infecting the City and Unyazi festivals (Cape Town) to name a few, including performances and broadcasts in Sweden, Mozambique, Portugal, Germany and Brazil. He together with a colleague founded the annual Purpur Festival for transgressive arts in Cape Town hosting national and international artists and composers. Wicomb curated the electroacoustic project ‘Concert To’ which included the works of 11 South African composers diffused at the Cape Town Train station, Sasol Arts Museum and festivals abroad, including the featuring of Wicomb’s piece Birds’ Birds over Radio France.Wicomb has been a recipient of residencies in Switzerland, Sweden (VICC) and South Africa and winner of the Fleur du Cap award for best original soundtrack or score, New Music SA commission competition and ensemble DissonArt’s miniature project. He has worked with ensembles such as L’Instant Donne, Ensemble Reconsil, Ensemble Insomnio, Asko ensemble, Stockholm Saxophone Quartet, South African New Music Ensemble (SANME) and the Kwazulu Natal Philharmonic Orchestra.
This project is underpinned by the superimposition of two dyadic practices: psychoanalysis and music composition. The former is exemplified by the different approaches of a psychoanalyst and analysand/s; the latter of a composer and musician (free) improviser. A relationship comprising of a composer and an improvising ensemble is highly unusual because of both parties’ pre-occupation with dominance and authorship within a composition. The conventional composer requires the services of the interpretive musician responsible for performing his/her composition by faithful realisation of the closed score. I propose that these over-determined roles with disciplinary embedded interests be challenged and studied by casting the relational transactions (involving power, dominance, obedience, discipline, trust, safety, vulnerability, inter-subjective dynamics, etc.) between composer and performers as psychological processes. An improvisational opera that enacts these relational transactions, will provide a musical and intellectual laboratory for staging this idea.
Minette du Toit-Pearce (Senior lecturer in Voice) is the current Head of the Singing Division at Stellenbosch University’s Music Department. She began her vocal training in 1993 under the tutelage of Magdalena Oosthuizen. She received the degrees BMus, BMus (Hons) and MMus (Cum Laude) specializing in singing. She completed the University of South Africa (UNISA) Teachers and Performance Licentiates (both Cum Laude) and received the DJ Roode Overseas Scholarship, the Gertrude Buchanan and SAMRO prize during the UNISA bursary competitions. She was the overall winner of the ATKV Musiq competition as well as winner of the singing category and the Mozart prize. She was named first runner up in the SAMRO International Scholarship competition and also won the prize for best performance of a prescribed work. In 2009 she was a finalist in the Kohn Foundation Wigmore Hall International Song Competition in London. In 2010 she was also a finalist in the American Institute of Musical Studies’ (AIMS) Meistersinger Competition in Graz.
She regularly performs as a soloist in Oratorio and her repertoire includes Händel’s Messiah, the St Matthew’s Passion, St John’s Passion and B minor Mass by Bach, Stabat Mater by Pergolesi, Stabat Mater by Karl Jenkins and Mozart’s Requiem to name a few. Minette is an accomplished singer of lieder both locally and abroad and regularly performs at The Songmakers’ Guild in Cape Town. In 2017 she was nominated for a WoordTROfee for her performance of Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde. She has performed with all major orchestras in South Africa, most notably the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra and the Johannesburg Festival Orchestra.
Minette has performed at several National Arts Festivals in South Africa including the KKNK, Klein Karoo Klassique, AARDKLOP, Woordfees, Cultivaria, Suidooster Fees, Hermanus FynArts and Greyton Classics for All Festival. She has been nominated for three Kyknet Fiësta awards for her contribution to classical music at an arts festival. In 2015 she travelled to France and sang several concerts with the South African pianist Ilse Schumann
Minette regularly adjudicates at Eisteddfods and often travels outside of South Africa to Namibia and Zimbabwe to teach and perform. Since 2016 she has travelled to Maputo, Mozambique to perform at the Xiquitsi Mùsica Clàssica festival, where she also presented master classes. She is the head of the Singing Division at Stellenbosch University and fills the position of Senior Lecturer in Singing. She runs a very successful series of workshops “Working with Young Voices” and regularly presents these to teachers and singers. Minette will make her American debut later this year when she will be performing as soloist in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Minnesota Orchestra in Minneapolis. She will also accompany the orchestra on their South African tour as part of their Mandela 100 celebrations.
Her PhD research is on the archive of the South African Soprano Hanlie van Niekerk and aims to construct the first biography of her life and work. Her supervisor is Paula Fourie.
Erika Jacobs is a trained concert flautist who has worked as a performing musician and teacher for 25 years, as a member of various orchestras and ensembles, and teaching at senior school and tertiary level. She has published several flute-related articles and has extensive experience as an examiner and adjudicator.
Erika’s research interest concerns the question of expressivity and emotion in music performance, and in particular performance as creative practice. Her PhD study examines the artistic voice in music performance through the lens of critical complex thought.
Nicola Deane is a contemporary artist working across a multiplicity of platforms and media, her primary research interest is in absence of presence and how it influences (mis-)interpretation.
Decentering the Archive: Visual Fabrications of Sonic Memories is the working title of an interdisciplinary practice-based research project that engages archival material of DOMUS (Documentation Centre for Music) to create audiovisual media for a conceptual art installation.
Boitumelo Tlhoaele is an independent curator and former journalist based in Johannesburg. Her research interests are on the intersections of jazz and visual art and the visual and music archives within the context of curatorial engagements. She has co-curated a group exhibition title: (2015) and Considering Genius (2016). Tlhoaele has recently completed her Master’s Degree in Heritage Studies at the University of Witwatersrand.
Jazzuary Masterclass 2016
Edited by Boitumelo Tlhoaele
Considering Genius gives recognition to seven South African jazz greats, namely Dr Philip Tabane, Hugh Masekela, Johnny Dyani, Letta Mbulu, Louis Moholo-Moholo, Pat Matshikiza and Winston Mankunku Ngozi – through the artistic responses of six emerging contemporary artists alongside an established one.
The seven chosen musicians are but a handful in the canon of the jazz genre and are masters of their craft whose work isn’t always lauded or even known by the various publics despite the multi-dimensionality and significance of their work in the broader South African cultural history. These are creative forces, whose sounds have shaped, in many ways the current jazz milieu and as such should be played more often, studied and preserved.
Referencing American jazz critic and essayist Stanley Crouch through his book Considering Genius, the exhibition attempts to interrogate the historical settings of the music, the musicality of the compositions and the ever existing connection between jazz and the visual arts.
Under the umbrella theme of the Jazzuary Masterclass, the exhibition brings to light ideas of ingenuity, creation, historical moments and influences, heritage, public and personal memories.
It uncovers the notions of genius; what does it mean to be a genius and what burdens may or may not come with this state of being?
Considering Genius Inspired by the current, exciting and robust South African jazz scene, the exhibition also brings to contact the relationships between the “old” and “new”, young and old, the past and the future and the re-imaginings and negotiations of these seemingly disparate spaces.
Considering Genius invites the six artists, namely Ayanda Mabulu, Bambo Sibiya, Layziehound Coka, Malcolm Jiyane, Neo Matloga and Palesa Mopeli to create works that interrogate the music of the seven musicians. They are encouraged to respond to, reflect upon and interpret their music using their various forms of visual language.
Acclaimed photographer, Neo Ntsoma, makes up the seventh artist who presents a body of seven images, mainly taken at the Cape Town International Jazz Festival. Her artworks add more names to the list mentioned above as she offers images of some of her outstanding work she’s produced over the years. The exhibition sees various media including painting, print, and installation and a live performance, all of which function in conversation with the intricacies of jazz music as an art.