mayibuye suite for organ
This is a three-movement virtuoso concert piece for solo organ comprising I. Prelude, II. African Hymn, III. Toccata. It was commissioned for an international organ competition at the University of South Africa (Unisa) in 2001, and its title is inspired by the anti-apartheid rallying cry, ‘mayibuye, iAfrika!’ (come back, Africa).
The music draws on the composer’s compositional principles of ‘clazz’, a crossover between classical music, jazz, and other musics, as he explains in the detailed ‘Composer’s notes’ that preface the original score. ‘I have always been fascinated’, he says in these notes, ‘by the fusion of different musical styles and elements and a few years ago devised the term “Clazz” to describe that interface between the media of classical music and jazz that I often explore in my work … My Mayibuye Suite also reflects a rich palette of musical possibilities with its more classical first movement, the deeply African second movement, and the more popular idioms arising out of the dance rhythms used in the last movement’.
Reddy, who was born in Africa and worked for many years in both South Africa and Namibia, also explained how his exile in Germany from the late 1990s onwards often produced in him ‘music which yearns towards things African’.