The third installment of “Art of Jazz” took place Last Sunday, 5th of March 2017 at the Galleria Shopping Mall. It was an afternoon filled with exciting sounds of jazz, vibrant colors and happy faces. This edition featured the extremely talented “Swahili Jazz Band”, who entertained the crowd with their lively and soulful music.

In this edition, the event partnered with children from “KCCL” (Kenya Community Centre for Learning), a special school located on Thika super high way (behind Thika road mall) that caters to children with special learning needs as a result of different conditions such as Dyslexia, Autism, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy and many others. I was able to sit and chat with Esther Muchiri-Wamai, the school’s principal and ask her a bit about the school’s involvement with the event. She explained,

“We are here courtesy of Juma Tutu one of the main artists for the day, who is also our music director. As a school, one of our key missions is to identify and nurture talent for children who are abled differently and one of the talents that we have been able to identify among our students is music. Therefore, we want to take it a notch higher and that’s why we have engaged Juma, who also happens to be a parent, he is a father of a boy of the autism spectrum. It’s a parent-led initiative and thus as the parents and the school, we have come together to work towards nurturing the musical talent among our students.”

Art of Jazz

 

The children showcased their talents by performing a dance and singing a few songs. One of the children performed a cover of Sauti Sol’s “Kuliko Jana”, the piece was moving and full of passion. It was apparent that they loved being able to express themselves through song and dance and it was a beautiful thing to watch and be a part of.

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Art of Jazz

As I walked around the numerous stalls, I was reminded how innovative, motivated and talented Kenyans are. From accessories and apparel to art work, I felt inspired and proud to be a part of such a spirited event. I stopped by “Sheer Poise” and was able to speak to the creator and designer. Cynthia Awor, shared with me that she begun her accessories and apparel line in the beginning of 2015. Her collection was a combination of bright colors and unique prints. She even designed her own outfit and she looked absolutely gorgeous!

Art of Jazz

Art of Jazz

 

Art of Jazz

Art of Jazz

 

I was also able to briefly chat with Esther Wanza of “Keletu Afrika” who makes accessories using fabric and has recently started using recycled paper, plastic, rubber and glass. She started creating and designing about five years ago as a hobby and decided to take it serious about two years ago. Her pieces were edgy, eye-catching and fun.

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https://www.instagram.com/p/BRLE6gjgWMV/?taken-by=keletu_afrika

Frederick Bunda, an artist who specializes in African artwork informed me that he is located at Galleria Mall at the craft market. He had stunning mirrors, tables and handcrafts that would be a perfect addition to any home.

Art of Jazz

Art of Jazz

Art of Jazz

Art of Jazz

All in all, I was glad that I attended the event. There was a sense of community and a family ambiance which made me decide that this is an event I want to be a regular at. The band was amazing and kept us all on our feet. It is evident that there is a jazz movement in Kenya and it is definitely one worth getting involved in. If you are all about good vibes, good music and happy people then look no further, “Art of Jazz” is the place to be.

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Art of Jazz
Art of Jazz

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