Kulani Nkuna
1 minute read
20 Aug 2013
6:00 am

Zonke lit up the night

Kulani Nkuna

The Sony 2013 Music Showcase should have been termed the "Zonke Music Showcase". No disrespect to the other artists who performed on the night, but it seemed that the stage was particularly set for an explosive performance from Zonke.

Charlize Berg sounded wonderful, delivering considered, mature pop music. Romanz brought an interesting twist to proceedings, being an operatic vocal quartet singing both in English and Afrikaans. The burly band members offer an accessible product – a full, rich, blend of impeccable vocals and lush harmonies. The group inject a fresh, unique sound to their original songs, as well as to some classic standards.

Zakes Bantwini (pictured) was also in the house with his horn section and performing all-new material. The songs didn’t immediately resonate with the audience, though, sounding too similar to his previous offerings.

For the most part, the invited guests didn’t really expect the kind of performance that Zonke delivered on an innocent evening. Starting off her set with a passionate performance of Feelings, it was clear that she had brought her A-game, putting out every ounce of emotion into the song. Her band obliged, keeping pace as she improvised here and there. Just when the audience thought that the night couldn’t get any better, Zonke came out with her biggest hit, Jik’izinto.

That song was a revelation – goose bump stuff – and, Zonke upped the ante, singing the highly favoured famba moyeni part of the tune with great conviction. People didn’t want the song to end and Zonke complied, stretching it out to the excitement of her fans. At times it seemed as if the audience were in a church, under the spell of a musical spirit. The singer also performed some new material that is certain to garner her more fans and success.