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Johannesburg Arts Alive International Festival in partnership with SABC and SAFM presents the Divas In Democracy Concert Celebrating 20 Years of Freedom.

The music programme celebrates the 20 years of freedom by honouring women’s participation in this historical feat at the Joburg Theatre on September 6 and 7.

With a strong lusophone tone and a commanding line up of reputable female musicians, the concert is definitely one of the main attractions of the festival's music itinerary.

Headlining is Brazilian Jazz maestro, Tania Maria, supported by Nancy Vieira from Cape Verde; Isabel Novella from Mozambique and our very own Lulu Dikana.

“We’re celebrating the critical role that women have played in achieving our 20 years into freedom with extraordinary female talent. This promises to be a well sought after show, so be sure to get your tickets early," said JAAIF music director and managing director of Bassline, Brad Holmes.

The Divas in Democracy concert also highlights South Africa’s efforts in facilitating a cultural exchange with BRICS allied countries and their performers. The entire Arts Alive programme includes well established artists from India; China and Brazil.

Tania Maria is one of the world’s most celebrated jazz giants with 36 years in the business and 25 albums to show for it. A master classical pianist, she weaves her native sounds of bossa nova, samba and choro into classical jazz in a sophisticated way. Then there’s her unmistakable voice whose low sultry quality can tackle any groove, including her percussive style of playing.

Nancy Vieira’s music carries with it the essence of Cape Verdean artistry – the affinity to music of ocean crossings and Creole culture, straddling the west and Africa. And this she shares with many of her native musicians including those from older generations. She is often compared to Cape Verdean music legend, Cesaria Evora, for their similar repertoires and musical associations. But Vieira owns the character of her voice which is direct, precise and perfectly controlled. The myriad of musical styles that she blends with her classical aesthetic makes her of the finest voices of Cape Verde’s new generation of singers.

Isabel Novella has created her own brand of music, which she calls, pop-world-soul, by fusing soul-bossa jazz; marrabenta-bossa; up beat reggaeton and afro soul. Attuned to music and singing from a young age, Novella has since 2005 performed with her family band, Neco Novellas in more than 50 festivals in Europe. Signed to South African label, Native Rhythms, she has Bob James playing piano in her song, Voices found in her debut album. Her international repertoire, natural talent and stage presence make her a young artist to watch.

With her musical style at times reminiscent to that of English soul singer, Mica Paris, Lulu Dikana follows her own rules with her authenticity, unique sultry-velvety voice and a feisty independent demeanour. From a career of musical theatre and cabaret to a stint at Kalawa records (a leading kwaito and dance music stable), Dikana now commands respect in the Urban Soul sphere. Blessed with musical heritage from her jazz drummer father, Viva Dikana, she pays tribute to him with her third anticipated self- entitled album this year.Beautiful, powerful women presenting diverse musical tastes and histories in the backdrop of a lusophone theme, the Divas In Democracy concert is geared to strike a chord.

Tickets are available from Joburg Theatre at R250 per ticket.