MEC Mazibuko pays tribute to legendary music educator Dr. Johnny Mekoa
Gauteng MEC for Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation, Faith Mazibuko has paid her last respect to the legendary and world renowned trumpeter and music educator Dr. Ramakgobotla Johny Mekoa who died yesterday, Wednesday 03 June at the age of 72.
It is with heartfelt sorrow and pain that I learned of the passing of one of our most respected and prominent jazz and music brain South Africa has ever produced, Dr. Johnny Mekoa. A great human being, teacher and most of all a dear friend. The first black student with a Degree in Jazz and went on to get a Master’s.
The jazz musical institution he was, he went on to found Music Academy of Gauteng in 1994 wherein he shared his knowledge and taught, mentored and guided a whole lot of artists. The center focused on teaching jazz music to children from poor backgrounds with the likes of Malcom Jiyane who was once a street kid.
Artists such as Malcolm Jiyane, Mthunzi Mvubu, Mpho Mabogoane, Nthabiseng Mokoena and Linda Tshabalala to mention a few, have gone through his hands at the academy.
We in Gauteng and aspiring jazz musicians throughout the country and elsewhere have lost dearly however know that his legacy will live forever.
Mekoa’s hard work was noticed worldwide and was awarded with many accolades such as Life Achievement Award by the Swedish Jazz Federation, The Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) Lifetime Achievement Award together with numerous Mayoral Awards from the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality. This man also played a very important role in the establishment of the Standard Bank Youth Jazz Festival that takes place annually during the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown.
We’ve lost a great teacher, artist, musician and a leader in the music industry. He will be greatly missed. May his soul rest in peace and his legacy continue be an inspiration to the nation and bring comfort to the loved ones he left behind, concludes MEC Mazibuko.
Source: Government of South Africa