Durban jazz and fashion enthusiasts can look forward to the second edition of Fashion Meets Jazz, a lifestyle event which incorporates live jazz music and showcase fashion, which will be held at the Olympus dance and nightclub on Friday 5th of April starting at 18h00 and going all the way till 21h00.

This is a brainchild of students Nomfundo Cleo Cele and Nkululeko Ndlovu.  The duo is studying music at University of KwaZulu-Natal. Cele has a diploma in fashion design which she obtained before enrolling for a music qualification.  Ndlovu on the other hand is the founder and owner of Okwabantu Events which is making all the preparations for the event.


Nomfundo Cleo Cele. Picture by Mfikination

“I was the source of inspiration for this idea.  In fashion and jazz, it’s not easy to make it big when you are in Durban because art is not really embraced and supported that much”, Cele told Jazz It Out.  She believes that fashion and music have and will always influence the culture of “their times” which helps the city to grow its relevance in arts, lifestyle and entertainment.

Despite not having sponsorship for the event, Cele and Ndlovu believe that Fashion Meets Jazzis a great initiative which will change the mindsets of those who follow jazz and fashion as years go by.  Ndlovu added: “We currently don’t have any sponsorship, but a few potential sponsors have been approached to come on board”. The resources they have are not enough but are nonetheless driven by the passion and vision to ensure the event is a success nonetheless.


Fashion Meets Jazz. Picture by SDR

Most of the fashion advertising is targeted at the youth and they want to add their voice and influence.  The youth always play a role in influencing fashion trends.  But they are quick to emphasize that this event is not just about fashion but also jazz, a fair balance between the two.  Despite the event being organized by students, it is not targeted only at the youth.  “Fashion Meets Jazzis for everyone who loves good live music and want to know what is trending in the fashion scene”, Ndlovu told Jazz It Out. “Arts has no age nor gender restriction.  This is for everyone.  We have the older generation also in mind”, Cele added.

This event is not part of their music curriculum at UKZN.  “It is a personal interest for both of us”, they said.  They also strongly believe that more people know about this year’s event compared to last year’s and feel this year’s venue is more appropriate.  When it comes to fulfilment one gets from being dressed to their level of satisfaction, Cele firmly believes that: “The way you look and feel has a positive impact on how your day will go and boost your confidence”.


Vocalist Sne Zungu will be performing

“Jazz is about self-expression.  The fashion we are showcasing is also about self-expression”, Cele emphasizing the relationship between fashion and jazz.  She also dispels the myth that youth is not interested in jazz.  She blames some event organizers for the putting lineup of artists who are not jazz performers for jazz gigs.  “They are misled into attending gigs and festivals billed as jazz events when there is actually no jazz performed”, she told Jazz It Out.

Cele believes South African radio stations should be platforms used to promote the country’s jazz artists.  She believes radio stations underestimate the importance of jazz and its following among listeners. Vocalist Sne Zunguwill be performing at the event. Fashion Meets Jazzcan grow better as years go by depending on the support it receives from the people it’s targeted to.   Tickets are available at R80 and R100 at the door.  For more information on tickets please call +27 74 0186 866 or +27 73 6661 542.

Nomfundo Cleo Cele is on Facebook.  Her Instagram account is @mfundocleo. Ndlovu is on Facebook as Nkululeko Dusty Nldovu and on Instagram @dusty_ndlovu.