Alliance Francaise hosts soulful exhibition of album covers

If you are going to Richmond Hill this weekend for the street music festival presented by the Alliance Francaise, then make sure you pop into its headquarters to look at its new exhibition, The September Jive – A Tribute to SA Musical Heritage.

This exhibition of 150 South African CD and album covers will take you on a nostalgic stroll down musical memory lane, from Arthur to Zonke, from Juluka to Savuka, from Springbok Hit Parade to the Springbok Nude Girls and plenty more in between.

The exhibition will be open at the Alliance at 17 Mackay Street in Central until June 23, as a tribute to the musical heritage of South Africa. From there, it heads to the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, from June 29 to July 8.

Collectors and designers Siemon Allen, Rob Allingham, Caroline Hillary and Molemo Moiloa curated the exhibition SA Musical Graphics and Collectables and they have included art that hits all the right notes.

There are other events to tie in with the exhibition, and in Grahamstown, visitors also will be able to listen to “My Favourite Sounds”, during which personalities speak out about their favourite tracks and albums.

Unfortunately, says the Alliance, this section of the exhibition has not arrived in Port Elizabeth. Even so, the Central show is worth a visit as the sleeve covers have a focus on truly South African designs.

It starts with a boeremusiek album cover from 1957 and then moves forward through the country’s history, highlighting the different genres which have been popular.

Albums such as Feel So Strong by artists Steve Kekana and P J Powers with Hotline show how music was transcending racial boundaries way back.

The exhibitions also provide a digital platform for the general public to join in by sending their own favourite recordings and sleeves. On Facebook the address is:, on Instagram use the hashtag @september_jive and on Twitter use #septemberjive.

Gallery hours are 9am to 1pm and 2pm to 6pm on weekdays. Inquiries: the Alliance, (041) 585-7889.


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