After fans complained about its relocation, promoters of The Hamptons Jazz Festival have once again returned the music extravaganza back to its original venue, Duma FM grounds.
The 2016 instalment of the festival was initially slated for Gaborone Club following disagreements between the promoters and management of Duma FM grounds. The promoters revealed in an interview last year that they had decided to relocate from Duma FM grounds after nearby residents complained about noise to the local authorities. However, it later emerged that there was more to the issue than just complaints about noise, as the relocation was primarily influenced by disagreements over payments between the owners of Duma FM grounds and organisers of the event. The Hamptons promoter, Debbie Smith later refused to comment on the issue, saying she didn’t want to “burn any bridges”.
The promoters apparently fell out with the management of Duma FM grounds, who were demanding a bigger slice of the pie upon realising the festival was raking in lots of money.
However, reports indicate that the two parties have since smoked a peace pipe and reached a mutually acceptable agreement.
“I am happy that we did not burn any bridges after the collapse of our initial talks,” Smith told Arts & Society this week. “We managed to iron out our differences and come to an amicable agreement.”
Smith also said the issue of parking space at the alternative venue was one of the major factors that influenced their decision to reconsider.
“Because of limited space we were bound to have four separate parking areas, which was a security headache,” said Smith.
The organisers had also come under fire from some fans who argued that the alternative venue, Gaborone Club was too small to host such an event.
Preparations for The Hamptons recently hit a rocky patch, as apart from the headaches caused by the venue, the promoters also had to deal with the pulling out of South African boy band Beatenberg.
The Hamptons promoters announced in December last year that they had received a letter from Beatenberg managers announcing that the band would not be performing at the concert as scheduled. This was despite Beatenberg having already signed a contract and receiving 50 percent of the performance fee.
In the letter the band explained that they had to reschedule studio time for recording their new album to a date on which the producer and studio would be available.
On the brighter side, The Hamptons Promoters managed to secure the perfect replacement for Beatenberg, chart topping Afro Soul singer Nathi Mankayi of Nomvula fame. Nathi is currently hot property in music circles because of the success of his album Buyel’ekhaya, which catapulted the 32 year old to super stardom after its release in mid 2015.
The equally talented Vusi Nova, with whom Nathi collaborates in Nomakanjani, will also grace the stage at this year’s Hamptons Jazz Festival scheduled for February 27. The final list of artists set to grace the event includes Caiphus Semenya and Letta Mbulu (SA), Vusi Mahlasela (SA), Oliver Mutukudzi (Zimbabwe), and The Soil (SA). The rich line-up also includes the cream de la cr├¿me of local jazz in the form of Sereetsi and the Natives, Sharon Sibonge, Women of Jazz, Trinity Mpho and Nono Siile and DJ Dy Laninah Benz. The Hamptom Promoters say the festival attracts fans from as far as UK, SA, Zimbabwe and Namibia.