The new month started with a bang as Tanz Café officially opened its new venue in Fourways on Thursday, 1 July, 2010. Prime Circle helped draw the crowds in - although I don't think much urging was needed. Many loyal Tanz fans (from its rocking Bryanston days) were there as well as new.
Situated in The Buzz Shopping Centre (next to Hooters, with which many of you will be familiar), the new Tanz Café is far bigger than the old version. It now has two bar areas, a dining area (including the stage/live entertainment area), a lounge, upstairs balcony/viewing area and a large outside area with a marvellous view. There is no smoking inside, but the outside area is welcoming, social and has fire pits for warmth.Sleek, modern, and spacious
I was invited by Prosound, which does the lighting and sound for the venue, and they let me have a peek at the band room, or "backstage" area (although its not technically behind the stage) and it's a marked improvement from the single-couch-behind-black-curtain set-up that existed at the old venue. It is sleek, modern, and spacious.
I caught up with the owner of Tanz Café, Grant Van Zyl, and asked him for some insight behind the reasons for the move. "We needed a bigger venue so that we can host more people and cater for larger private functions," he said. Top of the list, however, for the increase in floor space is to bring in bigger bands. "We are working on getting in more international acts and more well-known local acts to Tanz Café," he said.Positive feedback
According to Van Zyl, the response to the new venue has been very positive. "The people love the new venue, especially since it's so central. There has also been great feedback about the live acts we have hosted so far."
Although its focus might be to increase international acts and to draw in more established local bands, Tanz is definitely not shirking the smaller, lesser-known outfits. During a mingling session on the outside balcony, I ran into local band Delta Grove, a fairly new band with a blues/rock/punk sound. Two of its members, Mike Baldwin and Byron Kennedy, told me about Delta Grove Presents, a mini-festival held at Tanz Café once a month on a Saturday to showcase the country's up-and-coming new talent - all gypsy-style and blues bands. The next one will be on 31 July from 2pm.
"The new venue is wicked," Delta Grove agreed. "We're very excited to see where it goes from here."
The rest of the evening was spent among my very hospitable Prosound hosts enjoying Prime Circle's show - truly, those boys never fail to impress! My dinner consisted of a delicious butternut soup and green chicken curry and there was plenty of red wine doing the rounds.
Having moved to the area recently, I am more than happy to be so close to Tanz Café - and look forward to seeing what acts they will be hosting in the near future. So far, so good ...