The Citizen (Gauteng)

It’s ‘King Tha Day’


- Citizen reporter

‘I have chosen to share my birthday with a room full of women to bask in their power and magic.’

March 31 is Thandiswa Mazwai’s birthday and she wants all her sisters to celebrate with her at the Newtown Music Factory on ‘King Tha Day’ this year.

“I’m inviting my sisters to a women-only gig on my birthday in celebratio­n of their resilience and strength,” she said.

“It’s an attempt to strengthen the sisterhood and together imagine new worlds. We will come together in one space to celebrate our unique power.”

The ‘King Tha Day’ programme will kick off at 4pm with a market, talks and poetry in the small venue. The poets billed include Natalia Molebatsi, Nova Masango and Koleka Putuma, while speakers include author and professor Pumla Dineo Gqola, lesbian activist and filmmaker Bev Ditsie and Mail & Guardian arts editor

Milisuthan­do Bongela. Standard Bank Young Artist Award Winner for Jazz Thandi Ntuli and Ntsiki Mazwai will perform on the main stage before King Tha and the all-female band she establishe­d five years ago.

“All who identify as woman or are gender nonconform­ing are welcome,” said King Tha. “I have chosen to share my birthday with a room full of women to bask in their power and magic. On the night, we will create a supernova. We will shine a thousand times brighter than the sun and our light will be seen for a billion years to come. Our coming together may even create new galaxies, new worlds.

“We are strengthen­ing the sisterhood and everyone on stage will be a woman and all our vendors, the tech teams and venue staff will be women too. This is to help empower women in many of the fields connected to music, by giving them opportunit­ies they wouldn’t normally have. This is a celebratio­n of women, for us, by us. Where we cannot find a woman to fill a certain position,

we commit to running internship programmes to one day fill those positions.”

‘King Tha Day’ is a precursor to the AmandlaWom­xnFest, a weekend-long, women-only festival that Mazwai is planning to hold just outside Johannesbu­rg in August.

Mazwai, who has been a leading light on the music scene for over 20 years, first with Kwaito innovators Jacknife, then as a member of groundbrea­king group Bongo Maffin and as an award-winning solo artist, promises her many fans a show they will never forget.

“I am looking forward to spending time with my sisters,” she said about the gig on 10 Henry Nxumalo Street in Newtown.

I’m inviting my sisters to a women-only gig

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