Archive for ‘Interview’

November 1, 2013

tiger of sweden launches in cape town

11.01 Tiger Of Sweden, Cape Town, Danny K, Jennifer Su (by Denzil Jacobs) 01

With a legacy for excellence in fashion and clothing design perfected over 110 years, Tiger Of Sweden has opened it’s doors in Cape Town. Guests including singer Danny K, television personalities Jennifer Su, Liezel van der Westhuizen and Leigh-Anne Williams, actress Vanessa Haywood as well as former Miss South Africa Nicole Flint were invited to enjoy an evening of fine fashion, canapés and champagne at the official launch of the new Tiger of Sweden at the V&A Waterfront. It was certainly a spectacular event with models showcasing some of the brands most iconic and modern pieces while guests browsed the collections and tried a few garments on.

It’s a philosophy in a sense, we want to have a different cut to make us more unique, “ Ronnie McDonald, responsible for the menswear tailoring department, tells me, “It can mean a detail, it can mean a silhouette, fabric. It’s the idea that we’re constantly striving to be unique in some ways.” Over a glass of sauvignon blanc at the Table Bay Hotel in Cape Town, I chatted with Fredrik Folkesson, Product Manager and Head Sourcer Denim, about their jeans. “We looked at the market, we wanted to do a different cut when it came to silhouettes and fits, to [take] out the cow-boy and put in the rockstar instead.” says Fredrik, “A bit of rock and roll.”

11.01 Tiger Of Sweden, Cape Town, Vanessa Haywood, Fredrik folkesson, Leigh-Anne Williams (by Denzil Jacobs) 02

Later, the festivities continued as a select few guests were invited to enjoy dinner and champagne at Shimmy Beach Club. One of Cape Town’s hottest summer spots, the evening was enjoyed by celebrities and some of South Africa’s top bloggers including Leigh van den Berg, Elrico Bellingan, Karisa Nichols, Clouds Drummond and Jasna Zellerhoff.

Visit the new Tiger Of Sweden Cape Town Store at the V&A Waterfront or visit the international store at www.tigerofsweden.com.

Special thanks to ZebraSquare PR.

 

 

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February 1, 2013

celebrities talk j&b met ‘made to fly’ fashion

J&BMet Fashion, Nicole Flint, Ty Keogh, Jonathan Boynton-Lee, Natalie Becker (by Denzil Jacobs)

The theme to this year’s J&B Met is “Made To Fly” and I talk fashion with some of the most fashionable celebrities in South Africa at the luxurious African Pride 15 on Orange Hotel in Cape Town. “I think you can do a lot with it, the Met always create great themes,” says Miss South Africa 2009 Nicole Flint. Enlisting the talent of up and coming Cape Town fashion designer Victor Cook, who specializes in bridal and evening wear, Nicole talks a bit about her custom designed Met dress drawing inspiration from the use of color and fabrics, “I thought of a butterfly, that was the basic inspiration. This year I’m going to have fun, it’s such a great day… it’s about fashion and having fun.”

IT-Man of the moment and GQ’s Best Dressed Man 2012, Ty Keogh shared some of his thoughts about the Met and fashion styles for men and ventures a guess that perhaps the modern man in South Africa may stray from the obvious ‘big feather ensembles’, “I think its going to be step away from the ‘bird theme’, I think a lot of guys are gonna go for light airy summery looks,” says Ty, hoping for not too many white suits. Giving just a hint of what to expect from him this year, Ty eludes to a more aviation-inspired look, enlisting international clothing brand, Tiger Of Sweden, “I wanted to wear Tiger, because they cut a very sharp, clean image which is in line with my idea of aviation.” Painting a picture of the tailored style and masculinity held by pilots, Ty says, “That is where my mind goes to in terms of “Made To Fly”. It’s an iconic style. I like that clean cut classic look, so I’ve gone with an avian white combination. I’m going for clean, sophisticated and classic. Not over the top, if there’s any color, it’ll be a small amount to compliment my lovely date’s outfit.”

Top Billing presenter Jonathan Boynton-Lee may be making an appearance at the Met this year too and had this to say about the Met, “This will be my first time at the Met, I’m very excited and keen to see what it’s going to be all about.” Undecided about how he’ll interpret the theme, Jonathan mentions Markham, “The Signature Markham Store in Sandton have a great selection, that will fit quite nicely with the theme.”

“Summer… Summer colors, very flirty, very feminine, very fresh, with a hint of feathers and sunglasses by Sunglass Hut to complement my outfit,” says actress Natalie Becker as she plans to have fun with her ensemble this year and the ‘Made To Fly” theme.

Only one day left to perfect that J&B Met Made To Fly ensemble!

November 6, 2012

a conversation with ali dedianko for belvedere vodka

Allison Dedianko for Belvedere Vodka (by Denzil Jacobs)

It’s always a treat when you learn to appreciate something new, I had just that experience when I met with the Global Brand Ambassador for Belvedere Vodka at the Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town recently. The sassy-chic lady, Allison Dedianko chatted to me about her ambassadorship. From cocktail waitressing in Baltimore to working behind the bar, Ali found her passion in mixology, “Working in restaurant bars I actually found to be the best, because then you have access to a kitchen and you have access to a chef who has an inherent knowledge of food and flavours that work well together.” says Dedianko. After 8 years, she crossed over to this new side of the business, now from the brand side. Belvedere has a huge selection of cocktails which are created seasonally, taking into account current trends, “Cocktail trends change the same way that trends change in fashion, in anything. So for us, we always try to be current. We are lucky in that we have a very flavorsome, characterful, unique and versatile product,” says Ali.  Proud to be a Polish vodka, Ali explains that its not all about being presented in  beautiful bottle, but it’s about what the bottle contains, “We’re really proud to be Polish. We are made from 100% dankowskie gold rye,” says Ali, which is a specific strain of rye grown just near their distillery in Poland and has a “really spicy, sweet, rich, vanilla characteristic” which play a role in creating cocktails. Ali refreshed my palate with a quick tasting of Belvedere Vodka‘s original and intense polish vodka and it was no surprise that i loved it.

Special thanks to Vivid Luxury PR.

August 16, 2012

conversations with the ‘my top billing dream’ top 5

My Top Billing Dream, Lynelle Kenned, Chamendran Naidoo (by Denzil Jacobs)

In Top Billing spectacular style, Jonathan Boynton-Lee was selected as this year’s My Top Billing Dream winner last Tuesday. I took some time to chat with Lynelle Kenned, Chamendran Naidoo, Zama Ngcobo and Lauren Blackwell about their experiences as part of the Top 10 contestants on the reality show. A roller-coaster of experiences and emotions for each of the contestants, from the opportunity to live at one of Cape Town’s top hotels, 15 On Orange Hotel and be competing for the top spot on SA television’s premiere lifestyle show.

Top 4 contestant, Lynelle Kenned: “It’s about being good at not just one thing, but learning and continually pushing yourself and growing,” Lynelle adds. We spoke about Lynelle’s background in singing, as an opera singer and performing for a crowd and how that influenced her success in the competition. “More than anything, the opportunity that all of u got is just amazing. I’m so happy and proud of Jonathan,” says Lynelle, “I’m going to look forward to seeing him on TV every week.” she continues with a smile.

My Top Billing Dream, Zama Ngcobo, Lauren Blackwell (by Denzil Jacobs)

Top 4 contestant, Chamendran Naidoo: “I think from the start, ’til the end I showed continual growth and think that’s what kept me in the competition,” says Chamendran. “I was easy to teach and willing to learn.” A much more confidant Chamendran that at the start of the competition, we spoke about the surprise of being told he was selected from thousands of hopefuls to be a part of the Top 10. “The Top 4 and the Top 10, we all support him, we knew him from day one ’til the end.” Chamendran says about winner, Jonathan.

Top 4 contestant, Zama Ngcobo: “All in all it was new territory for me. I experienced and learnt a lot. Every task I was given from the beginning of the competition was new ground for me, and I performed to the best of my ability,” says Zama.

Top 5 contestant, Lauren Blackwell: Eliminated just a week after her interview with international pop star, Justin Bieber, Lauren has taken time to consider her future goals in media, acting and presenting. At the age of 19, she understands her achievement of being selected as a finalist in the competition. “I am so young, I’m 19 and I’m in the Top 10, now I’m 19 and I’m going to Australia, now I’m 19 and I’m interviewing Justin Bieber. I was very very fortunate,” Lauren says about her interview with Bieber. “I want to go back to studying. I want to do film, whether it’s directing, producing or acting, but I definitely want to be involved in media.”

Follow Lynelle Kenned, Chamendran Naidoo, Zama Ngcobo and Lauren Blackwell on Twitter to find out where this experience may lead them. Follow @SABC3TopBilling on Twitter and Facebook for more of The Good Life.

August 6, 2012

greg kriek & khanya ngumbela talk about their journey on “my top billing dream”

My Top Billing Dream - Greg Kriek (by Denzil Jacobs)

It was a big surprise to SABC3‘s My Top Billing Dream reality show viewers last week when two contestants were eliminated. I sat down with Greg Kriek and Khanya Ngumbela to chat about their Top Billing experiences. Juggling both the Top Billing presenter search auditions and a philanthropic initiative, Greg Kriek found himself in the midst of a safari when he received the call from Top Billing that led to him receiving the news that he had been selected from thousands of hopefuls to be a part of the Top 10. Shortly thereafter, Greg checked in to his hotel room at the 15 On Orange Hotel to join the Top 10 contestants and the roller-coaster began. With his background in production, direction and acting, Greg embraced this new opportunity with both hands, “My whole Top Billing experience, everything was a debut for me, from the oysters to walking on a runway.” says Greg, “My motto and my vision in life is to use the platform of entertainment and media to empower others.” We spoke about the publicity that My Top Billing Dream has afforded him, “You know, going for a walk on the beach and having people say “Greg, I’m rooting for you”, for me that is a sign that I am walking in the right direction.” Given a opportunity to train as a director on Top Billing after being eliminated, Greg’s journey has certainly opened doors not only for him, but also organizations like the Happy Feet Foundation which he is involved in, “In reflection, exposure with Happy Feet, to me that is gold! To me it’s the grand prize.”

My Top Billing Dream - Khanya Ngumbela (by Denzil Jacobs)

Khanya Ngumbela gracefully shared a bit of background about herself, highlighting her previous presenting and modeling experience and her decision to audition, “I thought, let me bring what I’ve got and let’s see if they like it.” says Khanya. She described the moment she was told that she made the Top 10 as a whirlwind of emotion and excitement, “It was wonderful, so surreal.” In a competition environment, it can tough and straining, Khanya took another approach to this, “I said to myself, I need to compete against myself, I need to give my all and showcase myself in the best light.” About her elimination last week, Khanya remains positive and grateful for the opportunity she was given and worked toward, “Even though I’m out right now, I don’t feel like I’ve lost. I’ve grown as a person and a presenter.”

Catch the My Top Billing Dream reality show on SABC3, Tuesdays at 8pm. Visit TopBilling.com and follow @SABC3TopBilling on Twitter.

May 28, 2012

talking secrets with elana afrika

Elana Afrika

Thousands of South Africans tune in to her lunch time show on 94.5KFM radio every weekday, but Elana Afrika is more than just a radio DJ. Elana made me a delicious cup of coffee recently just before her 12noon radio show time and we got to chatting. From TV to radio, Elana has been in the public eye in South Africa for a number of years, having work at DSTV and various radio stations. “I speak for a living,” says Afrika, as she talked about her rather impressive résumé in broadcasting as well as MC work, which include corporate work. Her first big production was a stage production of “Grease” in Cape Town at the age of 17 as a principle dancer and actor, “That was my big break.” says Elana who got the role after auditioning with many more experienced candidates at the time. The next move for Elana was Johannesburg where she pursued a television career as well as radio which included Jacaranda FM and 5FM. Very family oriented, Elana enjoys spending as much time as possible with her family after spending 10 years in Johannesburg away from her family. Now part of the tight-knit family at 94.5KFM, the “lifestyle reporter”, as she refers to herself, appreciates the platform she has at Cape Town’s number one radio station, “For me to be here is more than just an honour. Being at the Cape’s number one radio station… Have I reached the ultimate in radio? Yes. Will I grow more? Of cause I will. Why? Because I’ve go great management.” Catch Elana Afrika on 94.5KFM every weekday at 12pm. Also see her website, www.elanaafrika.com.

April 17, 2012

talking secrets with conor mccreedy

Conor Mccreedy

South African born artist Conor Mccreedy, now living predominantly in New York City has been painting all his life and has created his own signature blue colour. I had the opportunity to talk to him in New York by phone and asked him about his signature blue, “It’s my blue, ‘Mccreedy Blue’ and it’s my own colour. I love it because it makes me happy, it’s a beautiful colour, it’s my favourite colour. It symbolizes the ocean, it symbolizes life. I’m inspired by life and ocean,” says Mccreedy. The most notable thing about talking to Conor is his ‘passion’, he is by nature full of life and energy and you can’t help but get swept away a little by this, not only for his amazing artwork, but his ambition and drive. Not afraid to push boundaries and break rules with his artwork, Conor respects his work for what it is and not what it should be or what society or critics expect it to be. Now, 25, he is poised to venture outside of his artistic world to explore other creative avenues whilst still keeping his feet firmly grounded in his true passion, painting. He discussed a film prospect as well as a visit home in the next few months. Certainly a Proudly South African man, Conor has become somewhat of an ambassador for South African arts, paying tribute to Africa in his work and in his life. His love of the African landscape and nature is undeniable as he lights up when surrounded by nature. Inspired by the ocean, the African bush and wildlife, his latest exhibition is aptly titled “African Ocean” which is currently being shown at The Charles Bank Gallery in New York. “I’m always working, right now I’m not painting because my show is on, but I’m drawing in journals every night, I have a little book and I do sketches,” says Mccreedy. Conor is proud to have one of his paintings added to the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art today! Secret: He mentioned as a tidbit that he inherited his defined chin from his great great grandfather, Sir Theophilis Shepstone, and Conor is the only one in his family to have been given that particular trait since.

Visit ConorMccreedy.com and follow Conor Mccreedy on Twitter.

All images courtesy of Conor Mccreedy.