Samples of Past Projects

Collaborative Performance 131201 Between Life and Death with myself (piano) and Joke (improvised text) during a small classical music festival run by noted clarinetist Dimitri Ashkenhazy, how gave us an opening to improvise on the theme of life and death (and the space in between).

Collaborative Performance 90910 my oog, jou snaar, with Strijdom van der Merwe, one of South Africa's foremost landscape artists. Through hotel owner Lex Petousis, we were introduced to each other with an eye to a performance event that happened in Stellenbosch, where I created an hour long soundtrack to accompany a video track of his work, including land art created for the 2010 Soccer World Cup held in South Africa.

Collaborative Performance 70728 Helena Conradie produced a number of high quality and unique albums of stories, poems and music in the Afrikaans language. She drew me in for the music for "Skeffie Beffel" as well as the collaborative production "Doepa" (stage and album) based on the poems of late Afrikaans poet, George Weideman. Performed at Die Woordfees, Stellenbosch March 2008. The latest product (2012) was a collection of children's stories and songs for which i did all the music arrangements. Kom Vlieg..

Collaborative Project 141005 Peter Jones Visual Art Pete and I come a long way, first doing performances and multi-media projects (Moving Chicago, etc) in his erstwhile Chicago studio performance space. now based in Michigan, we embarked on joining his visual work with music tracks of mine..

Composition 110129 I was approached by Marius Venter of SES Youth & Culture e-Learning & Curriculum Support Programmes, who is also involved with national choir competitions to present three of my choir songs to a national competition. The pieces were then selected as prescribed works and studied by numerous choirs in 2011 (Her Time Has Come, Beautiful Land and Afrikaner Is My Naam). Winning choirs took some of them overseas with rousing applauses for Beautiful land as final song in Prague and Vienna.

Multimedia Production 50809 Uilvrou In Nieu Bethesda, South Africa, in the heart of the Great Karoo plains, Helen Martins lived to become a legend. Her house is a monument to creativity against many odds, a personal sphere of imaginative spirituality. Marlene Zwiegers asked me to create a video and soundtrack to accompany her one woman stage piece on the life of Helen. Her production "Uilvrou" (from Afrikaans uil for owl) toured for a long time and touched many people powerfully.

Musical Arrangement 60130 Nolufefe Mtshabe (opera singer/teacher connected to the University of Cape Town) is a special muse for the HA!Man. We met during the Woman of the year gala in 2001 where she fell in love with "Beautiful Land." She then approached me for a choir song to inspire the youth of SA. That was how Her Time Has Come was born. Since, she fed me with a series of her own Xhosa songs to arrange and make an album with. We both have a soft spot for bringing the passion and vibrancy of African music together with the passion and sophistication of Western classical music. Jan 2010: we have just finished finalizing four songs and recorded Fefe in the back of my van. Nolufefe sadly died some years thereafter.

Musical Arrangement 51008 Rozanne Stoman has known me for about a decade, met me in Port Elizabeth at a show. Then later moved to the States - Greenville Ohio, then Chicago - where I visited a couple of times. She always wanted to make something of the Afrikaans songs she's been writing in her spare time. And bit by bit I assisted her. As a singer, she is a late bloomer. Gigs started to follow and by 2012 she worked hard to put her first full album together where i played cello along with it. Now in San Francisco, her "professional hobby" as a singer continues.

Musical Arrangement 10130 John's Songs I had an address in Grahamstown for a brief while. I put out an ad for musicians to join an improvisation ensemble. Then a lady called, Lorna, in her sixties. Bubbly, very musical and a direct 1820 settler's descendant. She could improvise. And she introduced me to John, Afrikaans, a bureaucrat, who never married, but wrote love songs to imaginary girls in North America where he's never been. His songs became his love. And I was regarded as an answer to prayers, the one who would translate his vision into manuscripts. When they heard my arrangements, they were over the top, dreaming of tons of sales and money.. My arrangements never went anywhere. And then John died..

Organizing 130327 Performance tour with Joke Debaere and Blessings Chimanga, whom i met near Harare, Zimbabwe, at a "music camp" some years ago. In an improvising session, i was told that i really should jam with this guy. This happened then and a year later again, to tumultuous response from those present. Blessings - young, compact, with a star presence and cool humanity - electrifies through his playing. Part of the Zim tradition of producing stellar musicians. He's been keen to come to South Africa, to collaborate and perform together. In Sept 2013, we made this a reality. Blessing arrived two days after Joke and I landed up in an armed robbery. What a challenging and rewarding week! With no computers and shattered psyches, we stormed the stage with Blessing, going acoustic all the way. A Blessing at the right time!

Recording 60508 Lowell Dijkstra's composition for cello and voice. we met by introduction of Henk van der Vaart, in Epe, the Netherlands. we spoke intensively about creational processes and exchanged music. i'd like to perform some of his pieces and perhaps we collaborate to create a mutual piece in future, even though this has not realized yet. We have a bridge to cross between spontaneous music making and serious modern composition. In the meantime i have recorded two of his pieces, one a Gaelic song for cello and voice, and the other, a cello solo piece "Sing me a song of Consolation."