Lorraine Klaasen and June Garber
From the Promoter
orraine and June were both born in Johannesburg and came to Canada in the 70’s to escape apartheid, a system abhorrent to each of them. Born and raised in Soweto, Lorraine experienced firsthand the oppression of racial discrimination; June grew up in a white area of town, but recognized from an early age the cruelty of the system. Although they knew each other by reputation, Lorraine and June didn’t meet until September of 2016 at the Kensington Market Jazz Festival where June was performing. The meeting was arranged by another Juno Award-winning musician, Dominic Mancuso, who knew both women and was intrigued by the similarities and contrasts between them.
“Dominic recognized the strong connection we both retained to our South Africa roots, and thought the common thread of our music, although from different genres, presented an opportunity for us to work together,” Klaasen recounted.
“From the moment I met Lorraine, I knew we had a bond, not just as South Africans and singers, but as women who share the same values,” says Garber. “The protest songs that were such an important part of the anti-apartheid movement resonate strongly with me. And the connection through jazz to Lorraine’s mother is another bond.”