So I did it again! No “oops” cos I meant it
Last year I was approached by a minstrel group to experience what its like to march (jol really) from District Six all the way to Bo Kaap. This year I went a bit bigger, I took some well known faces along with me
I distinctly remember last year walking up from City Hall where I was taking videos and pics for this website up to meet the minstrel group I was marching with, when I walked by a troupe called Juvie Boy Entertainers. Juvie Boy? Why does that sound so familiar? Oh yes! Now I remember! I’ve seen it on the back of the windscreen of a guys car who was in my class! You see, for years 3 guys in my class played soccer for a local team in the area (I’m from Woodlands and their soccer club is in Lentegeur, Mitchell’s Plain) by the name of Juventas Football Club. Hence the Juvie Boy thing! Anyhow, I liked their minstrel outfits then and remember thinking they’re quite a big troupe. Last year was their first year.
Look I’m no minstrel expert and I’m just in it for the jol geite on Tweede nuwejaar so I’m not gonna sign up membership but I can tell you, after Saturdays doings, the crew I was with definitely look like they would want to going with JBE again, if we’re still around For years I’ve stood on the sidelines watching as tens of thousands of satin and umbrellas go by so being “inside” it all is close on mind blowing. But as I said earlier, I added a bit of a twist, I decided to invite a few well known faces to join me on all of this! Comedian, CTV presenter, radio presenter, prank caller, MC Wayne Mckay was one of them and the other was “Cash Crusaders superhero” guy, magician, thespian, MC, tv actor (Montana amongst others) Charles Tertiens and then we also had Stormers and WP rugby player Nizaam Carr all in the mix
Some journalist picked up on the story that we would be dancing with JBE and next thing you know, Voila! Page 5 of the Argus! Full spread So Saturday arrives and I get to the City Hall to take some pics and I only managed a few troupes before I get a call saying they’re at CPUT and I need to hurry and join up with them.
Now for those who don’t know, the march starts at Kaizergracht Street in District 6 (CPUT) and moves towards the City Hall up to Adderley Street where we turn left then right turn into Wale Street all the way to Bo Kaap and right into Rose Street where buses are waiting on the teams. Sometimes it takes 3 hours, sometimes up to 9, depending on amount of troupes and stop/starts and prayer and drinks breaks etc.
Personally I can see the look of the minstrels is slowly changing as time goes by and I love it! I want everyone to form part of this celebration and make the world see how amazing this really is. Of course there’s loads of work to be done and proper infrastructure and logistics needs to be put in place, but this huge event can become humongous! To the point where more tourists than currently, line our streets and join in the festivities!
My one friend whom I’ve met in PE but is from Cape Town, is a white guy and he joined us! So besides getting loads of attention from everyone in the troupe and along the road, the tourists were the ones snapping pics of him!
I knew I had to let him experience this cos Emil and I go to St George’s Park to watch cricket here in PE and we always sit with the band. When he told me how much he loved it I told him “If you think this is amazing, then I need to show you the minstrels”. Little did he know I was planning to get him into a gear and dance with us, until only a few days before Tweede Nuwejaar
If you don’t know about the history of the minstrels in Cape Town I suggest you find some reading material so you can better understand it. There’s also a big Malay Choir or Hollandse Teame or Nagtroepe parade that happens New Years Eve as they usher in the New Year. Even the Christmas Choirs have a parade in Town.
We were dead by the time we reached Rose Street up in Bo Kaap a few hours later having marched/danced/jolled in the sun for hours. Every now and then buildings provide shade and every now and then there’s a breeze but most of the time its bloody hot! And to think that we could go home and go soak in a warm bath or cold shower whichever you preferred but all the minstrels had to get to the buses and move onto their respective stadium to still compete in the competition! To sing and dance and parade and march and the brass band blowing! Its one hell of a job so I take my hats off to all the minstrels in the competition.
Personally I would simply like to say thank you to the Juvie Boys and I can’t mention everyone’s names but I can recall Ayyoob, Yusuf, Ikraam, Fuad and Boebie. The tons of other members who came to chat to us, to chill with us, take pics etc. The folk on the side who shouted our names as we walked by! Thank you to all of you for making my stay in Cape Town so unbelievable!
To all the other troupes taking part in the road march, thank you for the sea of colours and for the Cape Town sounds that permeate the air around this time. Good luck to all the teams participating in the competitions!
And just to be apart of this carnival is unbelievable
Juvie Boy Entertainers are based in Lentegeur in Mitchell’s Plain and besides being a minstrel group, they do some good work in the communities as well.
Also see these stunning pics of the troupe: