It was a thoroughly thrilling night of music for thousands of revellers who packed the Bergville Bowling Club for the Music Experience on Saturday, 25 November 2017.
The Music Experience was part of the three-day inaugural Drakensberg Extravaganza aimed at showcasing the heritage and tourism attractions of the area
Organised by the Drakensberg Productions, in partnership with the Okhahlamba Local Municipality and other sponsors, the Music Experience unleashed more than 20 performers on one stage for the first-of-its-kind concert in the Midlands town of Bergville.
One of the most anticipated performers was Bergville native Sjava. The hip-hop crooner lived up to the name of his highly successful debut album Isina Muva.
Sjava got on stage after sunrise on Sunday morning, 26 November. He started his set off stage and unannounced, with the crowd’s jubilant cheers once they heard his voice belting a familiar tune.
The Music Experience was the first time Sjava had performed in his hometown.
Another artist who had a homecoming was Big Zulu. The founder of Nkabi Rap is also known for his role in the hit television drama Isibaya.
The line-up also featured international artists such as the queen of house music, Monique Bingham, of the US.
The crowds sang along familiar favourites that have made her a household name in South Africa.
House legend Ralf Gum also spun the decks, while fellow German DJ Lars Behrenroth thrilled the audience with his dance moves in between dope mixes.
Performance highlights included DJ Fresh, who was accompanied by a percussionist.
Unathi Msengana brought a live band on stage, paying homage to Brenda Fassie and Mirriam Makeba by performing their classics, such as Too Late for Mama and Pata Pata respectively, for their song books, as well as her own soulful compositions.
While there was an already jam-packed line-up, local up-and-coming maskandi artist Nkonjane took full advantage of an impromptu opportunity to perform after event organisers were impressed by his initiative.
Among the economic spin-offs was the opportunity for local caterers to put up shop in the venue to sell refreshments, instant photo prints and other much-needed offerings.
There was a strong police presence with enforcements from other stations neighbouring Ladysmith and Langlaagte. Emergency services were also on standby, as was a fire truck.
Okhahlamba Local Municipality Mayor Mlungisi Ndlangisa said: “We are very pleased with the way people behaved themselves. They were here to have a good time – and that is what happened without incident.”
The grounds were still packed when gqom’ queen Babes Wodumo wrapped the Music Experience just before 6am.
For more information, call 063 983 6423 or e-mail: email@example.com.
Issued by Drakensberg Extravaganza event organiser Sipho Ndaba.