On 12 December 2020, Top Wedding Singer Ike Moriz and his swing band made their Paarl debut at the picturesque Grande Roche Amphitheatre. During the COVID-19 pandemic this outdoor venue could offer a great space to safely accommodate the allowed maximum of guests while ensuring social distancing regulations.

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From the first note played, concert goers could feel the excitement of the celebrated swing band about gracing a stage again for the first time since the hard lockdown. Their performance of all time hits and audience favourites on a warm and lush summer’s evening in the heart of Paarl was the first time for many to be enjoying live music again in a long while. The atmosphere was fantastic!

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Dressed in the sky-blue, Ike was accompanied by his top notch band of session musicians lead by the incomparable sax and clarinet genius Willie van Zyl and inspired pianist and recording studio owner Andrew Ford on piano.

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In their dynamic, audience engaging performance the swing quintet played songs like Ike’s original tribute to the mother city, his bluesy anthem ’To Cape Town’ as well as his well-known swinging radio love song ‘Love Swings’ from his same titled 2015 album.

To enhance the festive mood and atmposphere of the December holidays, the band also invited the local Paarl Girl’s Singers (the core singers of the Paarl Girl’s Highschool choir led by head of arts department Anjulie Nock) to the stage. Read the set list here.

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photo by (c)2020 Madri le Roux

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Besides performing further original Moriz swing hits like ‘Feels Like France’, ‘Sofia’, ‘Siren Terpsichore’ or ‘Petite Madeleine’, the audience got to sing and clap along to classic popular evergreens like Nina Simone’s ‘My Baby Just Cares For Me’ and Sinatra’s golden chart toppers 'That’s Life’, ‘Lady Is A Tramp’, ‘ trangers In The Night’ and ’Hello Dolly’.  

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More current swing and pop was also part of this evening’s musical menu with a heartfelt rendition of John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ and Michael Bublé’s ‘Everything’.  Cellist Anjulie joined also the band for an impromptu performance of Dean Martin’s all time hit ‘Sway’. 

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The band’s expressive latin take on Weill/Brecht’s ‘Mack The Knife’ brought an upbeat South-American flair and groove particularly via the steady hand of drummer Ivan Bell - or was it the local Under Oaks red and white wines that temporarily transformed the Cape of Good Hope into Cape Horn? What a great way to end the year!

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After 2 hours of upbeat, romantic, melodic and heart-warming music that also included several seasonal classics performed by the choir, the enthusiastic Ike Moriz swing band left the stage to a standing ovation of a very appreciative and happy Paarl audience - soon to return to a stage near you! 

Service providers:

Music: Top Wedding Singer (Ike Moriz Swing Band)

Sound & Lighting: Falcon Sound (Francois Ashton & Carl Du Toit)

Photos: by (c)2020 Madri le Roux

Catering: Concept Foods (Niel van Zyl)

Wine: Under Oaks Wines

Venue: Grande Roche Amphitheatre & L’Atrium at Grande Roche

Flowers & decor: N Concepts and Designs

Production: Mosquito Records London Pty Ltd.

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