The Hugh Masekela Heritage Festival is happening for the first time since his passing in 2018, on what would have been his 80th birthday. Bra Hugh was loved by many the world over and the event promises to embody his spirit.

Wondering if you should attend? The festival has loads to offer and here are five reasons why it will be worth taking time out with family and friends to enjoy an unforgettable time.

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The history

Not only did he spend many years in exile during apartheid, but he believed in an Africa with no borders and he loved unity. In the Soweto Theatre, you get to see and experience the life of Bra Hugh in the No Borders Exhibition, with photographs, album covers, passport stamps, footage and exclusive interviews he did.

The iconic trumpet 

The exhibition has the trumpet that the legend cherished as his idol; the very same one that Louis Armstrong gifted to Bra Hugh in his early career.  

Hugh Masekela Heritage Festival
Hugh Masekela Heritage Festival

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The music

It wouldn’t be a celebration without great music. Thandiswa Mazwai will pay tribute to her friend and mentor with the Hugh Masekela Band. Additionally, the festival will feature Sjava, Sipho ‘Hotstix’ Mabuse, Madala Kunene and Thabang Tabane, amongst others.

The performance for Thandiswa will be an emotional one because not only was Bra Hugh a mentor but also a close friend. “I obviously love Bra Hugh’s music, but I’m very sad that he’s no longer with us. I’m afraid I might cry on stage. I’ve been a huge fan of Hughey since I was 14. My first performance with him was with my high school choir. Our friendship was one of the most important relationships of my life. Nothing could prepare me for doing Hughey's music without him, so this is a very special show for me,” she says.

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The Venue

You get to experience the improved historic Soweto Theatre Amphitheatre. A great outdoor venue for music and live performances.

It’s for the whole family

It can be a fun-filled day for the entire family in honour of our culture, music and heritage. There will be stalls with arts, crafts, food, drinks and a kiddies area.

Catch the festival on Saturday, 9 November.