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President Zuma saddened by passing of jazz legend Ms Thandi Klassen

President Jacob Zuma has expressed deep sadness and extended his heartfelt condolences on the passing of legendary jazz musician and recipient of the National Order of the Baobab, Ms Thandi Klassen, who passed away today, 15 January 2017. 

“The country has lost one of its internationally acclaimed and respected jazz icons in Ms Thandi Klassen. Her passing is a tragic loss to the nation. Ms Klaassen contributed to the country not only as a musician but also a social and political activist who was always outspoken about social-economic issues in the country. We have lost one of the leading pioneers of South African jazz music and promoters of the country's cosmopolitan culture. She was a role model to many of our young and upcoming musicians and her legacy will live on for generations to come," said President Zuma.

Ms Klassen earned several awards and honours including the National Order of the Baobab from the President of the Republic which was bestowed on her for her excellent achievement in and contribution to music. "We convey our deepest condolences to her family, relatives and all in the arts and culture industry. May her soul rest in peace,” President Zuma said.

Enquiries: Dr Bongani Ngqulunga 082 308 9373 or  

Issued by: The Presidency