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A night of magical music at this year’s Ruth First Jeppe Fiesta

On Friday 30 August the Ruth First Jeppe Memorial Trust will be holding their annual Ruth First Jeppe Fiesta at the Wits University’s Linder Auditorium at 7.30pm. Jeppe High School for Girls celebrate their 100th year and this musical treat comes to the party with an evening of music that will delight audiences.  This annual music event aids the Foundation created in memory of alumna Ruth First and currently sponsors 56 girls at Jeppe High School for Girls.

Under the masterful baton of the award-winning maestro Richard Cock this year’s line-up features World Choir Games gold medallists Jeppe Girls’ Choir and Highland Cathedral, with a programme so diverse it takes audiences from Grieg’s famous piano Concerto in A minor performed by Jeppe High School for Girls’ head of music Elize Kruger to a My Fair Lady medley of hits and the Can Can choreographed by Loryn Lewis.

This year’s Fiesta sees the premiere of South African composer Franco Prinsloo’s commissioned work Cantate for female voices which especially celebrates the Jeppe High School for Girls’ Centenary.

Pianist Elize Kruger will take to the stage with violinist and Jeppe High School for Girls’ strings specialist Mia Björkman–Sun and soloists Dominique Deysel and SAMA-nominated Timothy Moloi who returns to this special event.

There will also be performances by the Jeppe Pipe Band, South Africa’s oldest school pipe band.  under Master-in-Charge Damien Pitman. Specialist vocal coach and choirmaster Johan Bester conducts the Jeppe Girls’ Choir and Andrew Parfitt will bring out the best of Jeppe Girls’ Orchestra. Jeppe Hlabelela and Marimba ensembles are also lined-up to add their captivating sounds to the evening.

All performances will be accompanied by the much-loved Johannesburg Festival Orchestra who tirelessly work towards building the performers and audiences of the future.

Jeppe old girl Carolyn Steyn, of the 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela campaign, will make a guest appearance along with other Jeppe luminaries Dina Gonçalves and Di Thompson in the Toy Symphony.

The Ruth First Jeppe Memorial Trust was established in 2010 to pay tribute to anti-apartheid activist and journalist First, who was killed in a letter bomb explosion in 1982. She matriculated from Jeppe High School for Girls in 1941 and, in 1949, married South African Communist party stalwart Joe Slovo. They had three children, Shawn, Gillian and Robyn.

Using First as a role model, scholarship recipients are provided with full tuition to enable them to obtain top-quality education at Jeppe, one of South Africa’s leading schools.

In addition to academic, extramural and leadership excellence, the young women are exposed to other role models and events that broaden their horizons and prepare them to address national challenges.

Tickets for the concert are R230 to R290 from Computicket. Discounted block bookings are available for 10 or more. For further information contact 011 616 5090 (mornings only) or email

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