Siphokazi Ngxokolo- Bili is jazz vocalist and educator from East London.
Born and raised in Mdantsane, East London in the Eastern Cape, Siphokazi is a musician who has been influenced by her musical upbringing and lineage. Her late father Sydney Thobile Ngxokolo was a member of the 1950’s close vocal harmony jazz group called the Boogie Brothers along with the captivating bassist Johnny Dyani in Duncan Village. Her uncle Mike Ngxokolo a former trombone player who was part of ensembles like The Junior Jazzmen and who later became a choral music composer.
Siphokazi has been a regular feature at some of the leading music and arts education faceted ventures of East London and the Eastern Cape. Her associations have been with the late Pinise Saul, Lulama Gaulana, Retsi Pule, Dominic Egli, Feya Faku, Andile Yenana, Nduduzo Makhathini, Lady Smith Black Mambazo amongst others.
Siphokazi’s passion for teaching is not limited but extends to the holistic view of the artistic build of creatives and expanding their horizons within the Arts field. Having honed her music administration skills in the field, she has also curated and facilitated events in and around East London.
Siphokazi currently serves as a board member for South African Jazz Education (SAJE). She has been part of the conceptualization of the Guild Theater Jazz in Schools program which is an intergenerational program for jazz musicians who teach and mentor young jazz musicians in rural schools and communities in East London. Siphokazi has also worked with Social Development and The Department of Arts and Culture facilitating workshop programs and mentoring the youth.
Siphokazi lectures at the historic University of Fort Hare Music Department and her research interests are on the Heritage studies and Music of the Eastern Cape extending to Arts and Music Administration. Siphokazi obtained her Honours in Music Degree at the University of Fort Hare majoring in Jazz Vocals, Music Administration and is currently studying towards her Masters in Music at Rhodes University.