Sizzla Kalonji in Concert with 35-Piece Orchestra

Sizzla Kalonji in Concert with 35-Piece Orchestra


Reggae Month took on an electrifying surge with Sizzla in concert. Making a historic performance with the Reggae Orchestra, which has thirty-five pieces, he undoubtedly rose to the occasion. Birth name Miguel Collins, Sizzla first entered the Reggae scene in 1994 with his hit “True God”. He followed this with his first full-length album “Burning Up, ” debuted in 1995. Since then, Sizzla has remained a staple in reggae music. He has consistently released hits the likes of “Thank you Mama” and “Dry Cry” throughout the years. Sizzla has released over 56 albums throughout his illustrious career and has garnered international success musically.

It is no wonder Sizzla got the nod for this concert. His catalogue is immense, and his performance never fails. Therefore, it’s fitting to honour him during Reggae Month. Thanks to the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission and all the partners that made this possible, today’s show was a first of its kind. Never before has such a performance happened in Jamaica. Attendees included those from the music and entertainment industry, governmental agencies, other dignitaries and the media. 

Barbara Blake Hanna

Sizzling with Anticipation

Upon entering the venue at the national indoor arena, you could sense the anticipation of what was to come. Jamaican colours blanketed the auditorium. The night’s mood took shape as the stage perfectly lit the space and created an atmosphere for greatness. Towards the back of the set was a giant monitor showcasing images of Sizzla, His Imperial Majesty, and many other black revolutionaries. The engineers strategically placed the stage middling the auditorium, making it ideal for viewing by all patrons.

A team of extraordinary industry practitioners known internationally for their excellence put together the 35-piece reggae orchestra. The arrangers included saxophonist extraordinaire Dean Fraser, veteran reggae musician and music teacher Ibo Cooper, and Jon Williams, a maestro in the classical and jazz genres.

Before the man of the moment hit the stage, the orchestra began playing. The background vocals crooned along with some of Sizzla’s hits. The anticipation continued to build. To ensure that everyone enjoyed responsibly, the organizers emphasized that those in attendance follow strict Covid protocols regarding social distancing and keeping their masks on. 

Sizzla jamming and having a great time

Sizzla Sizzles on Stage

The moment that everyone was waiting for was here as Sizzla entered the stage. He was dapperly clad in a grey two-piece suit and grey bowtie. He pinned images of His Imperial Majesty and Empress Menen on the jacket. The man of the hour was ready to deliver. He came full of energy from the onset and captivated the audience with his stage presence. Sizzla performed hits such as “Just one of those days”, “Woman I need you”, “Take myself away”, “Guide over us”, and “Solid as a rock”, to name a few. Dancers from L’Acadco Dance Force vibed with Sizzla during his performance. Little Nalain Reid and another dancer from L’Acadco did an ensemble, providing the intro for the artist to perform his song. The show’s highlight was when Sizzla performed his hit “Thank you, mamma”.

Roberta Daley, Aunt of little Nailain Reid L’Acadco dancer

Sizzla Did Not Dissapoint

 As a demonstration of their appreciation, those in attendance sang every song, word for word. Mission accomplished! Sizzla and the reggae orchestra did not disappoint, as they delivered good music and a sweltering performance. The concert’s end was bittersweet, and it appeared to be so for Sizzla himself. The audience wanted more, and the artist seemed willing to give more; however, time did not permit.

Shanea Brown, Audience
Ava McLean, Audience
Makaeda Haye, Audience

Sizzla’s performance goes down in history as the first time a Dancehall DJ performed with a 35-piece orchestra. The planning and execution of the entire show beamed top of the class accolades. Bravo to Dean Frasier, Ibo Cooper, and the whole team for creating such a spectacle.


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One Response

  1. Masterful organising, performance and delivery. WELL doNEMinister Grange, Ibo, Dean, Jon and ALL involved.

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