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Sunday, August 27, 2017


KZN Music Imbizo is a fast growing annual international music business conference and exhibition. This year, it is hosted at the Moses Mabhida Stadium from August 31 to September 2. The conference collects various music industry stakeholders under one roof to map the way forward for the music industry in the continent – Africa. It is a platform to exhibit, network, share expertise and knowledge.

The theme for this year is The Digital Future.

The global music industry experienced its first growth in over 20 years during 2016 and it is ushered by digital music streaming. As new revenue streams and innovations come in, changing listening and buying habits - old revenue streams like live performances, publishing and vinyl sales are also showing growth. The understanding of intellectual property and copyright has never been as important as it is now. Where is Africa in this music industry world where tech companies, music streaming, value gaps and ownership are hot topics?

Three brilliant minds form part of the impressive programme as keynote speakers: Dr Sipho Sithole (Native Rhythms), Manthe Ribane (Performer) and Christine Semba (WOMEX). The keynote speakers cover the theme looking closely at The Business, The Brand and The Stage. The three pillars of the music business.

Born in the South of France, based in Berlin and working on various continents, Christine Semba is a cultural management and international exchanges consultant, a music curator, and also an expert for the UNESCO Creative Cities. She has also served as expert for the EU Culture programmes. She leads the department ‘Consultancy & Special Projects’ at WOMEX/Piranha Arts. She has also developed the project LusAfro taking place in 2017: LusAfro aims to facilitate musical exchanges between lusophne Africa and Germany in the field of dance and urban music.

Dr Sipho Sithole is the most sought after music producer and speaker at music markets and conferences. an award-winning producer and former Deputy Managing Director of Gallo Music Group and is credited for coining the now most popular genre in South Africa, ‘Afro- soul’, after his successful signing and producing of artists such as Thandiswa Mazwai, Siphokazi, Simphiwe Dana, Camagwini, Pu2ma and Tribute Birdie Mboweni, Brenda Mntambo, and more. He founded a leading independent record label, production house and artist management company, Native Rhythms Productions. Native Rhythms Records is known for mainstreaming hip-hop in South Africa for breaking the careers of artists such as Skwatta Camp, Pro Kid, Zuluboy, Zakwe and recently Kommanda Obbs.

Manthe Ribane is a talented Soweto-born graphic designer, dancer and performer. At the age of eight, she performed in front of Nelson Mandela at the FNB Stadium for the world-renowned icon’s birthday. She is a creative and energetic woman who enjoys taking chances, because she believes it is the best thing to do to grow as an individual. She works as a graphic designer at 113 Studios which is co-owned by her siblings who are experts in conceptual set design as well as film and music. She made her vocal debut with musician Okzharp in the extended play production titled Dear Ribane which was directed by Chris Saunders. This extended play was presented at the Norient Music Film Festival in Bern Switzerland. She has an impressive list of collaborations from posing for renowned photographer Akinbode Akinbiyi, appearing in a South African tourism campaign and dancing on tour with Die Antwoord, the notorious rap-rave band that went global in 2010.

The KZN Music Imbizo 2017 will see over 20 countries represented for three days of networking, information sharing, exhibiting and some serious partying to some talented musicians from all over the continent. The Imbizo will cater for all types of music industry professionals and the audience (fans) as it looks into the Present Future – The Digital Future.

To stay up to date with the KZN Music Imbizo, follow them across the following social media platforms:

Early bird delegate tickets of the KZN Music Imbizo 2017 are available from Webtickets ( and Pick n Pay nationwide for R300.00.

The KZN Music Imbizo is supported by Ethekwini Municipality, KZN Department of Arts and Culture, Creative Arts College, Trace Africa, Gagasi Fm and Isolezwe.

For more information and the full programme visit