Atmosferic

Wendy

Wendy’s love affair with classic jazz standards and swinging hits of earlier decades began when she was a young girl growing up in the smoky coal town of Witbank, South Africa. And while this seemingly insignificant “dorp” could be considered a very unlikely birthplace for a musician, it was the rich musicality of her family which helped develop her musical tastes. The many hours she spent stooped over the record player listening to her grandfather’s collection of golden oldies laid the foundations for her broad spectrum of music appreciation.

Wendy made a start at playing the piano at 3….and singing not long after that. Her formal study of classical music under the auspice of the London Trinity College of Music was set in motion at the tender age of 5.  Dear Sister Dietmund, Wendy’s wonderfully eccentric music tutor for some 12 years certainly had her hands full keeping Wendy focused on her traditional training and away from her natural inclination towards and liking of jazz & blues.

The budding performer became evident at a very young age when Wendy would spontaneously entertain all and sundry with sing-alongs at the piano or one-man comedy stints on the stage at every given opportunity. Although a keen participator in stage productions & dancing shows, Wendy soon focused her attention on music-making, landing a gig at age 15 playing piano & singing at hometown restaurants every weekend.

Wendy

Upon matriculating, her formal study of music was put on ice whilst completing a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry. Whilst pursuing a career in education for some years thereafter, Wendy continued to broaden her musical horizons in her spare time by working in various bands & exploring several genres of music.

However, her deep fascination with & love for the great jazz & blues performers like Shirley Horn, Ella Fitzgerald, Carmen McRae, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Dinah Washington & Diana Krall came full circle, with a decision on her part to focus on developing a career in the jazz circles of the music fraternity. Wendy devoted her time & energy to learning from & working with as many high profile jazz musicians as possible in the past ten years. She has made regular appearances as a vocalist with the ultra talented likes of Johnny Fourie, Graeme Currie, John Fresk, Deni Lalouette, Wessel Van Rensburg, Neill Ettridge, Rob Watson, Jonathan Crossley & Marcus Wyatt amongst others.

In addition to fronting ATMOSFERIC as the lead singer & percussionist, Wendy has also joined forces with some of South Africa’s notables such as Jo Clark, Robin Walsh, Prince Lengoasa, Kate Normington, Tim Moloi , Harry Sideropoulos & RJ Benjamin in collaborative corporate shows. One of her most recent solo performances took her to the exotic shores of the Seychelles where she provided entertainment for the Prince of Jeddah & his VIP guests.

Wendy

A significant project of Wendy’s making has been the creation, production & direction of the musical tribute to the Andrews Sisters of yester year called SISTERS SENTIMENTAL. This vibrant cabaret with its intense & dynamic harmonies takes its audiences on a sentimental journey back to the second World War era with good old favourites like Lullaby of Broadway, Chattanooga Choo Choo & Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy, to name a few. The SISTERS SENTIMENTAL trio, of which Wendy is a part together with Veronique Laloutte (“V” of Pop Idols acclaim) & Lara Stirton is backed by a five piece band made up of the country’s finest session musicians. This production has enjoyed adoring audiences & wide publicity with performances at:

  • The Sangita Barnyard Theatre
  • Accenture Winter Festival 2001
  • Sandton City/Radio 702 Christmas Tree of Lights Celebration
  • Hyde Park 2002 World Summit Cultural Festival
  • Seychelles Royalty Cabaret 2004
  • Thomas International Platinum Awards 2005
  • Alton Gala Awards 2006
  • RMB Starlight Classics Concert 2008
  • Radio 702 Mother’s Day Picnic at Johannesburg Zoo 2008.

Wendy continues to establish herself as a respected & recognized artist with her very unique sense of sass, swing and soul that she brings to the collective musical mix.

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