Sought after composer and conductor Darryl Andrews, who had arranged and conducted the recently launched AKU Signature Music composed by Pakistani musician Nizar Lalani, visited AKU and gave a talk on the obstacles he had to overcome in order to pursue his passion for music.
Andrews related his life’s journey in music and described how he had started playing instruments at the age of seven and aspired to study classical guitar. Growing up in South Africa during the apartheid made it almost impossible for him to pursue a career in music and he eventually became a mechanical engineer. Since his heart was always in music he eventually quit his job and worked hard to hone his music skills while performing at hotels to make a living. He later formed a jazz group and has worked for the South African Broadcasting Corporation.
In an ironic twist of fate he was once asked to act as leave replacement for a friend and was eventually offered full-time lectureship in music at the University of Cape Town, the very university that had once turned him down as an aspiring music student. “The message here for students and young people is to never give up. With passion and hard work, success can be yours no matter what the challenge,” Andrews told the hall packed with enthusiastic students, faculty and staff. He performed some of his tunes on the jazz guitar including a special composition Bra des Tutu conceived as a tribute to Archbishop Desmond Tutu. The performance was followed by a keenly participated question and answer session.