The 14th Cape Town International Jazz Festival is ready to blow up a storm this weekend, with forty top local and international jazz musicians entertaining 40000 music fans, and adding R457 million to the economy of the Western Cape. Top performers include the Buena Vista Social Club, Mi Casa, Jimmy Dludlu, Jill Scott, and Gregory Porter.
Over its history the Cape Town International Jazz Festival has grown in stature to be ranked 4th in the top international jazz festivals, to such an extent that it has overtaken well-known international jazz festivals such as the Montreaux Festival and the North Sea Jazz Festival.
In a media statement, Western Cape Tourism Minister Alan Winde welcomed the jazz lovers attending the Festival, which kicks off tomorrow. ‘The Western Cape is proud to host this prestigious event’, said Minister Winde. He added that the Jazz Festival is one of the most important events on the Cape tourism calendar.
The Jazz Festival attracts a large number of visitors to Cape Town, largely Black Diamonds from Johannesburg, but also from overseas, with more than 60% of the attendees having been international jazz lovers in 2012. Nationally the Jazz Festival added R 860 million to the country’s GDP, and created more than 2700 jobs over the Festival period last year.
The contribution of the Jazz Festival is so important to Cape Town and the Western Cape that the plans to expand the size of the Cape Town International Convention Centre will enable the Festival to grow bigger too. Construction on the expansion of the Convention Centre is expected to start next year.
The 14th Cape Town International Jazz Festival, 5 and 6 April 2013. Tickets sold out! www.capetownjazzfest.com Twitter: @CTJazzFest
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter: @WhaleCottage