The Centre for Jazz and Popular Music recently presented a performance of Rites, Rights and Riots by UKZN Jazz Lecturer Neil Gonsalves.
Pianist and composer Gonsalves performed excerpts from two open-ended song cycles: F(r)ee Fall and Scenes from a Wedding.
F(r)ee Fall comprises a collection of pieces that were composed during a 10-year period - a musician’s diary of the order, disorder and reorder of things in academic and other confined spaces. Scenes from a Wedding is inspired by a series of family weddings and the celebrations and busy preparations that accompany them.
‘This ritual of communion, which occurred at the tail end of a six-week expedition of North America, is set against the backdrop of Trump’s wall, BREXIT, gun violence in the United States, #Blacklivesmatter, and Elon Musk’s self-driving cars and mission to realise human life on Mars,’ said Gonsalves.
The performance featured three short sets, highlighting different combinations by drummer and drum instructor at UKZN, Bruce Baker; current drum students Riley Giandhari and Jude Kenrick; UKZN alumni Ethan Naidoo (guitar) and Natalie Rungan (vocals); former student and bassist, Llewelyn Chetty; current students Phumlani Mtiti (alto saxophone) and Mokgethisi Nkotsi (trombone), and alumni and current students, Xolisa Dlamini (vocals) and Siyanda Zulu (trumpet).