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Suter’s Showbiz Spotlight

Octoberfest, MiTH, Neil Diamond tribute and more

A SURE crowd-puller in The Midlands this weekend will be the Octoberfest scheduled for Saturday, October 6, at Fat Harry’s at Kamberg Mountain Shadows.

Popular band Serrotone (pictured above) will be providing the music at the event, for which your R250 admission will include lamb and pork spit braai, German sausages, vegetable dishes, bread and rolls, salad, and a German dessert.

Serrotone will entertain with three sets – one at 3.30pm and two in the evening.

The group, which is to be joined by Nick Ames, one of the country’s finest trumpeters, features former Spoonfeedas vocalist and songwriter Peter Guthrie, Billy Kruger on drums and singer-songwriter James Robertson.

Deutsche Octoberfest

Tickets to “Das fast Deutsche Octoberfest”, as it is being billed, are available by phoning 079 753 3986 or 071 657 7966.

Also of note in The Midands in coming days is the next fortnightly music gathering at the Music in the Hills (MiTH) event in a barn at The Knoll Historic Guest Farm, Knoll Drive, Hilton.

Scheduled for Wednesday, October 10, the event will see doors open at 6pm and the music start at 7 pm. Admission is R30 at the door.

On October 10 it will feature pianist and performance poet Lara Kirsten as headliner at 9pm. Lara received her BMus and BMus Honours degrees (both cum laude) respectively in 2001 and 2005, at the University of Pretoria. In 1998 she received the Piano Grade 8 certificate from Unisa with distinction.

Pianist and performance poet Lara Kirsten headlines at the October 10 Music in the Hills event in Hilton. Picture by Gary van Wyk.


In 1999 she was awarded a Samro bursary for undergraduate students and received the Advanced Certificate for Piano from The Royal Schools of Music. In 2002 she received her chamber music licentiate from Unisa.

She was appointed junior lecturer at the University of Pretoria where she taught piano from 2003 to 2005. From the end of 2005 to 2008 she went on tour with the improvising cellist Francois le Roux through SA, Europe and the US.

For the past decade Lara has been active as both a solo and chamber musician. She is now based in the Midlands, from where she travels with her concert tours. She also teaches piano from her home.

Emotive ensemble

St John Haw, a psychologist, and Tanya Nicolson, an actress and restaurateur, will perform from 8pm on October 10. St John & Tanya, as they are billed, are an emotive vocal-piano ensemble with jazz and blues influences.

Auburn Sound will start the evening’s fun next Wednesday. The trio comprises Robyn Hunt on lead vocals, Mark Hunt on vocals and acoustic guitar, and Tristen Gwynn on bass. They play mostly covers of popular songs from various genres.

MiTH is a semi-open mic music club. Visitors may take their own booze. Food and soft drinks are available for sale. Musicians who want to play at MiTH, should call Charles Webster (082 331 7271) or Doug Borain (072 340 7034).

The Reals present Hot August Night, a Neil Diamond tribute, in Durban this weekend.

Meanwhile, if you are a Neil Diamond fan, consider catching Durban band The Reals’ Hot August Night, at the Rhumbelow Theatre in Cunningham Road, Umbilo, at 8pm on Friday and Saturday (October 5 and 6) and 2pm on Sunday (October 7), and again at these times from October 12 to 14 and October 19 to 21. The show will also run at Tina’s Hotel in Kloof from October 24 to 28.

KZN Midlands events

Diamond is an American composer, singer, musician and actor. With 38 songs in the Top 10 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary charts, he has sold more than 125 million albums worldwide.

Diamond was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1984 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011.

Paying respect to the music of this legendary artist are Barry Thomson on guitar and vocals, musical director Dawn Selby on keyboards and vocals, Mali Sewell on drums and vocals and Jason Andrew on bass guitar and vocals.

Included are Cracklin’ Rosie, Song Sung Blue, Longfellow Serenade, Desiree, You Don’t Bring Me Flowers, America, Heartlight, Sweet Caroline and I’m a Believer.

Tickets cost R150 each (R130 for pensioners and students with cards) and booking is at Computicket or by calling Roland at 082 499 8636.

Forest Whitaker as Archbishop Desmond Tutu in The Forgiven, new in cinemas countrywide this weekend.

KwaZulu-Natal Midlands news

Among films new in cinemas countrywide this weekend is The Forgiven, starring Forest Whitaker and Eric Bana. Directed by Roland Joffe it tells of how, after the end of apartheid in South Africa, Archbishop Desmond Tutu meets with a brutal murderer seeking redemption. The film is based on screenwriter Michael Ashton’s play The Archbishop and the Antichrist.

Another new cinema release this weekend is The House with a Clock In Its Walls, directed by Eli Roth and teaming Jack Black, Cate Blanchett and Owen Vaccaro. It’s the tale of a young orphan named Lewis Barnavelt, who aids his magical uncle in locating a clock with the power to bring about the end of the world.


Do you know? What pop singer from a famous family turned down the role of Sandy in the hit 1978 film, Grease, which went on to star Olivia Newton John? (Answer next week).

Last week’s question: What South African group – essentially a group of session musicians headed by Graeme Beggs – had a huge hit in the 1970s with Mammy Blue? (Answer: Charisma)


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