Early mornings, late nights and a schedule jam-packed with rehearsing, recording and producing – this is a normal day-in-the-life of 24-year-old Devon Marshbank. As a promising and vibey Capetonian entertainer, Devon believes that dedication, passion, hard work and a will of steel are the things that make the climb to success a possibility.
“I’ve always loved music and dancing. Entertaining people has been my dream for as long as I can remember, yet I know that any dream requires time and effort to make a success of it and in the end it is the struggle and hard times that make the final product worth it” says Devon.
Raised by his mother, Moira Marshbank, a dancer and former South African aerobic champion, it comes as no surprise that Devon truly knows how to wow an audience when he starts busting moves. His inspiration? Who else than the king of pop – the late Michael Jackson.
“I was nine when my gran called me and made me sit down to watch the Making of Thriller video. I remember staring at the Billy Jean solo and thinking that the moves were insane, naturally that motivated me to try it – so I did.” After attending dance classes, with the support from both his grandmother and mother, Devon performed a Michael Jackson routine at the Autumn Dance Festival and at 12 years of age he won an Honours award for his performance.
There was no doubt about the fact that he was a talented dancer, and in between rehearsing and training, he spent his time singing along to tunes by artists such as Backstreet Boys and N’sync. His mesmerising voice did not go unnoticed by the vocal coach Colin Leo. He immediately took Devon under his wing and started fine-tuning Devon’s vocal abilities. That was ten years ago.
Devon now choreographs, dances and sings for Fusion Productions and Entertainment which was founded in 2005 by Bruce T. “We used to produce shows for the Ratanga Junction Theme Park, but I now choreograph school and college productions and also perform at various events. I love hip hop dancing, but also do contemporary dancing and ballet. My manager Sean Bovim founded Bovim Ballet Company, so I star in those productions regularly. Our 2011 project, Romeo’s Kiss, was performed in February – it’s ‘rock’ ballet, no tights involved,” he says while laughing.
As for Devon, there truly never is a dull moment; receiving his first musical instrument, a keyboard, at age 17 he was soon inspired to try his hand at something new.
“I could create my own tracks. It was awesome, so inspired I bought a mixing-program that allowed me to add drums, guitars and other instruments to my music. Tweaking the bass and playing with the beat I soon had something unique.” In 2004 Devon started writing his own songs and finally in between choreographing for various SA and International companies and jetting off to perform in Seychelles and Dubai, he released videos and tracks such as ‘Maybe’ from his album entitled ‘Who I Am’ on youtube. The positive response to his music motivated Devon to start recording his first full length album (12 tracks).
“The revised ‘Who I am – established 2010’, is a mix of Pop-Rock, R&B and Hip Hop, and I’ve added a dash of the 80s and 90s to the mix because it’s always been my greatest musical influence. I’m also featuring some of SA’s undiscovered talent. As a producer and artist I believe that it’s important for artists to help each other. The entertainment industry has a lot of obstacles but enough help, guidance and support makes the journey a little easier and worthwhile,” says Devon. His album will be released this month.
Before he heads off to the studio for a day of intensive rehearsing and recording, Devon offers a few final words of advice to those talented individuals brave enough to take on their dreams, “Go as far as you can, and then go even further. Never stop, never give up - it’s your dream. So live it.”
For more information about Devon Marshbank, his upcoming events and album launch see .