set to make magic at Vodacom Durban July
Durban – The theme that governs the social and fashion elements of the
2017 Vodacom Durban July at Greyville Racecourse promises to mesmerise the
events 121st edition, as it encourages racegoers to interpret "The Colour
Announced every year in the months before Africa's Greatest Horseracing
Event, the theme is central to all the fashion competitions and is the
basis for all the decor in the suites and marquees on course on the big
day, and is the handiwork of Gold Circle's Event Marketing Manager Ken
Tweddell said that the 2017 theme had been born during one of last year's
pre-race day fashion shows.
"One of the models on the catwalk stopped and then unzipped the side of
her short skirt to reveal a beautiful elegant long skirt ," said Tweddell.
"That was totally unexpected, and the crowd let out a collective gasp of
amazement. That is what creative and clever ideas can bring to a special
event like the Vodacom Durban July.
"It's unexpected. It's pure magic when it works, and that is where the
idea of a magic-inspired theme started," recalls Tweddell.
"It also ties in perfectly with the overall style of the event, because,
even today, magicians perform in top hat and tails, accompanied by
beautiful women elegantly dressed. That is a perfect fit with the 'posh'
elegance that is synonymous with racedays," said Tweddell.
He added that he was excited to see how the theme would add a special
dimension to the hospitality décor, and the experiences of every racegoer
on the day of the Vodacom Durban July.
The six paragraph theme teases fashionistas and socialites with ideas that
could assist in it's interpretation, but as always the fashion gurus warn
against taking the theme too literally.
"It is essential that you understand that this is a fashion competition,"
says Fashion Programme Director Tiffany Prior. "Stay away from anything
that is too theatrical or Avant Garde and definitely nothing gimmicky."
Prior highlighted the repeated references to the colour red in the theme,
which aligns neatly with the events title sponsor, and cautioned not to
get too carried away with this.
"This brief is not necessarily about the colour red, it is about ‘magical’
fashion and design work," explained Prior.
"Judges will be looking for garments that are on trend and beautifully
executed, with an emphasis on being beautifully dressed for a day at the
races," she concluded.
The pre-raceday fashion programme will once again consist of three
distinct competitions, all presented by the fashion programme partner, the
Durban Fashion Fair.
The Vodacom Durban July Young Designer Award kicks into top gear on Monday
29 May, when over 100 students and their models try to catch the judges’
eye at the first round of judging of the student's completed outfits. The
competition is limited to registered students from KwaZulu-Natal.
The national Vodacom Durban July Fashion Challenge is initially judged
from storyboards, submitted by fashion fans ranging from enthusiastic
amateur home designers to industry professionals. This preliminary judging
at the new Ice Models HQ in Durban will take place on 11 May.
The third, and most prestigious element of the pre-raceday fashion
programme is the Vodacom Durban July Invited Designer Showcase, which will
premiere at the first of two Vodacom Durban July Fashion Experience shows
at Greyville Racecourse on 13 June, featuring the interpretation of the
fashion theme by eight luminary South African designers.
THE COLOUR OF MAGIC
The magician to be admired,
Must mystify and delight.
Conceptualize and be prepared,
To get the illusion just right.
The horseman to be honoured,
Must have a well-conceived plan.
The challengers to be conquered,
By being the fastest he can.
The designer to be cheered,
Must transform and surprise.
To reveal what is covered,
To see the wonder in their eyes.
Horsemen and designers,
Magicians of a kind.
Imagine, implement, put on show,
Blow the viewer’s mind.
Top hats and tails,
Or smart casual preferred.
It’s magic we’re after,
The Vodacom Durban July
Africa’s Greatest Horseracing Event
The 2017 Vodacom Durban July takes place at Greyville Racecourse on
Saturday 1 July. More information can be found at