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Support Franschhoek Hospice with unique concert
The Bubble with electric cellist Carol Thorns. Photos: Andrew Gorman

Red Cello Productions and Franschhoek Hospice present their annual picnic concert at the iconic Huguenot Monument in Franschhoek on 16 February.

This event is regarded by local and international fans as a highlight of the Franschhoek calendar and all proceeds go to Franschhoek Hospice.

This location forms the backdrop of unusual visual acts such as The Bubble with electric cellist Carol Thorns, popular fusion band CODA Africa, and The Galaxy Dress with saxophonist Judy Brown. 

This year’s concert will be opening with jazz singer and guest artist Melorie Jane. Electric cellist and Director of Red Cello Productions Carol Thorns says Coda Africa is a very interesting ensemble. 

“Coda Africa is a very interesting ensemble: Classical strings meet Zami’s vocals, jazz sax and house DJ. It’s amazing, a bit difficult to define and yet somehow it comes together on stage in a beautiful blend of styles and personalities. I think we all stretch each other musically which gives our act it’s special, eclectic feel. That, and the pure joy we experience on stage together after many years of performing! This year we are working on a new single so watch this space.”

The Bubble and The Galaxy Dress are both innovative performance ideas that originated from Red Cello. 

Thorns says: “The Bubble came about as a result of me being married to an architect! Alastair Thorns painstakingly built this product for me to perform cello in. We now use the act across the major cities in SA and exciting international locations. The Galaxy Dress was an idea that I had for events where the roof is too low for The Bubble! This is also now in London, Cape Town and Johannesburg. Creating new concepts for performing is really my great passion in life.”

CODA Africa will perform at the charity picnic concert in Franschhoek.

The opening act Melorie Jane is a jazz musician who lives in Franschhoek. Jane is currently doing her Master’s Degree in Stellenbosch in Jazz and is making her mark in the winelands with her clever compositions and interpretations of jazz standards. 

Thorns says that Jane will add a perfect feeling to the line-up: “We wanted to give an opportunity to an up and coming artist to be part of this growing event. The flow of the concert, I predict, will work well from Melorie’s jazz set, to our ‘get up and dance’ CODA performance winding down to a more relaxed soulful cello act in The Bubble and rounded off with Judy’s original sax music in The Galaxy Dress.”

In asking “Why is it important for the Red Cello and the musicians involved to support Hospice?”

Thorns explains: “As a group we all share close friends who have experienced first-hand the support and impact of Hospice in their lives. It is a truly fantastic organization that is doing such important work for cancer victims. This concert is a celebration of life and music and mountains!”

The concert starts at 18:00 on 16 February. Tickets are R300 and will be available at the gate or from Franschhoek Hospice Shop. For more information call 021 876 3085 or 082 887 8666.

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