THE Smoking Dragon Adrenalin Festival will take place at the Amphitheatre Backpackers’ Lodge, in the foothills of the uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park in KwaZulu-Natal from June 16 to 18.
The three-day unique event combines adrenalin-packed festivities with great music in the bo-ho backpackers’ lodge overlooking the magnificent Northern Drakensberg mountain range.
The festival offers an array of high-octane activities, and chilled relaxed vibes that are suitable for adrenalin-junkies, music-lovers, families with kids and even for the more mellow older festivite wanting to soak in the atmosphere.
This year, the festival coincides with National Youth Day and to pay special tribute, Smoking Dragon has chosen a young schoolboy to represent youth in the arts. DJ Eskay (aka Sakhiwe Khuzwayo) is only 19 and one of SA’s youngest club DJs.
Khuzwayo is destined for great things, at 16 he was in the KZN Top 10 in the SA DJing Championships. He has performed for thousands of people at Moses Mabhida Stadium at the Fact Durban Rocks parties, sharing the stage with some of the biggest DJs in the country, including Tira, Black Coffee, C’ndo, Lulo Café and Shimza.
His mixes have been played on two of the biggest radio stations in KZN, Ukhozi FM and Gagasi 99.5FM and is a regular feature on their entertainment pages. Eskay is still at school (Roseway Waldorf) and hopes to complete a music degree at University of KZN and, of course, keep SA’s dance floors packed.
On Saturday, June 18, the festival will focus on women in music under the theme “Smoking Diva Saturday”. Performances include Nje, the band led by beautiful vocalist, Portia Malunga Rowling, who will perform with bassist Rogan van den Berg, drummer Gary Parker and guitarist Gregan Aherin.
Also on the line-up is DJ Lindi Lush, her passion spans from electro to progressive and trance among other genres. Trailmix a dynamic DJ from the United Kingdom offering a “Bloody Good Rave” on Saturday, and promises to mash up the dance floor bringing a blend of reggae, dancehall, digital dub, steppas and bass.
DJ Nicky B from Kaya FM will also blaze the decks with he unique mix of Latin and African music. Another interesting element will be the collaboration of the Fantastic Cortina Whiplash (a three-piece all women rock ‘n roll band), DJ Spicy M with electro house sounds and upcoming star Nomisupasta with her fusion of traditional Xhosa instruments and commercial drum ‘n bass. Also on the bill is Ann Jangle, briefly back in South Africa, DJ Shakti, DJ Nats and Saarkie.
The music offering includes a range of neo-soul, folk, trance, house music and Afro funk sounds. On the bill of performers are acoustic guitarist and singer Gavin Ferguson, Rubber Duc whose quirky sound has been described as “ flock-swing-hop”, Durban-based soul music artist Chico Muya, 7th Son who joins the pack to add rock and reggae sounds from Cape Town and local Mbaqanga artist Inkonjane no Bheseni.
The Johanesburg based multi-award nominee MXO will add his afro-soul sounds in the line-up.The Lovestains from Johannesburg, Held On Till May, Raygun Royale, Boxer, Kings Down South and The Black Cat Bones promise to add in an eclectic mix of mood sounds to the weekend. To accommodate everyone at night, DJs will play in a private electronic dance music area far from the family camping site.
In between the music performances, festival-goers can enjoy numerous activities such as tandem skydiving (from the festival grounds), bag jumping (like a jumping castle for grown-ups), paragliding, abseiling, mountain biking, trail running, micro lighting, quad biking, off-road Segway, downhill scooting, canopy touring, paintball, hiking (to the highest waterfall in Africa), kloofing, white water rafting, bass and fly fishing or hot air ballooning. Most of these adrenalin activities are charged separately and can be booked through the Smoking Dragon website. All service providers adhere to all safety and regulatory procedures.
Accommodation is available in the many BnB’s and hotels nearby which Smoking Dragon organises on your behalf. There will be no entry fee charged to people staying at Amphitheatre Backpackers Lodge, either camping or in their rooms.
The lodge is child friendly and the festival has a dedicated kids zone with its own programme of child-centred activities and babysitters are available at night, this service must be pre-booked. There will be interesting food vendors, clean toilets, showers and full bar services.
The festival starts on Thursday, June 16 and runs until Saturday, June 18. Those staying outside of Amphitheatre Backpackers will pay a levy of R50 per day or R135 for a three-day pass. These will be limited. Kids under 12 staying off-site do not pay for a day pass but the “Kid’s Zone” will cost R70 per child per day and needs to be pre-booked.
Book at Amphitheatre Backpackers Lodge at http://www.amphibackpackers.com
Inquiries: email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 076 822 7508.