Dolly Parton takes to the stage with South African drummers and the crowd loves it

2019-04-16 14:08
Dolly Parton, Drumstruck

Johannesburg - Seven local drumming masters are making their way home after sharing a stage with award-winning country music legend Dolly Parton, at one of the largest theme parks in the USA.

Drum Café’s Drumstruck team – consisting of Mpho Rasenyalo, Patrick Pobee, Richard Carter, Sabelo Mgaga, Bafana Mahlangu, Emmanuel Quaye and Joshua Zacheus – entertained international audiences with their interactive drumming theatre experience at Dollywood, in Tennessee, USA.

They performed in the famous Festival of Nations at the Dollywood theme park, which attracts close to three million visitors a year.The local performers participated in the 2019 opening ceremony of Dollywood, with Parton exclaiming that she had been left "dumbstruck by Drumstruck".

Parton joined the South African cast at their opening show, wearing a drum and playing it on stage with Drumstruck.


"Meeting Dolly Parton and performing with her was one of many highlights for the performers. She joined the performers backstage and spent time getting to know them – it’s a memory that the entire cast will treasure," says Drum Café founder Warren Lieberman.

"Dolly Parton is an icon whose popularity is at an all-time high, so being affiliated with her is a defining moment for the Drumstruck crew."


Drumstruck showcases South African music and culture, drawing on gumboot rhythms and Zulu dancing while weaving in West African influences. Over 80 000 people attended Drumstruck in the beautiful Palace Theatre, where they performed for 900 people playing 900 drums, three times a day for five weeks - and closed to standing ovations.  


The team took 1000 drums on the trip, to allow them to share traditional African drumming techniques with the international audiences. The performers will be making their way home to South Africa on Tuesday 16 April.

Read more on:    dolly parton  |  local music  |  music

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