Rafiki Thabo Foundation
Musical entertainment

As our guests head up the beautiful staircase towards their champagne reception in the Court Dining Room and Drawing Room, something equally spectacular awaits them. Our friends from iyatraQuartet will embrace influences from the African continent to marry perfectly with their more Indian-inspired musical roots.

Described as ‘one of the most exciting new music groups around at the moment’, iyatraQuartet are multi-instrumentalists who work collaboratively to create original, boundary-bending and joyful music.  The London-based quartet have enjoyed performances at Being Human Festival, WOMAD and Songlines Encounters Festival, as well as multidisciplinary projects with contemporary dance and live poetry.

‘iyatra’ is derived from the Hindi word for travel or pilgrimage and the group embraces this sense of journey in every performance, bringing a classical sensibility to a jazz like approach. iyatraQuartet recorded a debut album, ‘This World Alone’, in November 2015, in the Union Chapel, London; received as a 5-star album choice by fRoots magazine and with a 4-star review in Songlines Magazine.  The inspiration for ‘This World Alone’ evolved through working and performing with musicians and artists in London’s rich cultural scene.   We cannot wait to introduce Rich, George, Will and Alice to you in November.

Ben Williams
(Magician 35) MMC Close up Magician

Ben Williams, Magician 35, is quite simply that guy you want at your party! He has a great sense of humour, loves people, oh and he does unbelievable magic! He is a member of the world famous Magic Circle, the world's most prestigious magic society.

That's amazing, thank you so much. I really appreciate the thought that you put into your magic David Blaine

With over ten years’ experience working within the magic industry he is an entertainment specialist. Ben has a wealth of knowledge not only about the magical arts but about how to use mystery to entertain and create memories. He has entertained countless A-List Celebs and has even advised top TV Magicians such as David Blaine and Dynamo.

​​I really like your ideas Dynamo
I am absolutely gob smacked! Simply unbelievable! John Culshaw
​That was one cool trick. Seriously! Olly Murs
Edward Rising

A charismatic and professional freelance auctioneer with decades of experience in Fine Art and Charity auctions.  Over the past twenty-five years he has worked for most of London’s top auction houses including eight years as senior auctioneer at Sotheby’s where he conducted some of their most high profile auctions including the collection of the late Gianni Versace. As an independent auctioneer, he continues to work within the Fine Art World, conducting many auctions throughout the globe.

Edward has an enormous enthusiasm for raising money for charity.  His charity auctions are legendry.  His entertaining, highly energetic and witty style has resulted in extraordinary amounts raised for many worthy causes all around the world including charity Galas in New York, Monaco, South Africa, Dubai, Switzerland and many more. It was also his unique auctioneering style which was appreciated by film director Danny Boyle, who cast him as the 1960s auctioneer in his 2013 film “Trance”.

Ed is one of the best auctioneers I have seen Lord Dalmeny, Deputy Chairman of Sotheby’s
We are delighted and honoured that Edward has agreed to host our live auction on the 15th November!

Trav ‘SAXINGH’ Panesar
International Pro Saxophonist

We are delighted to announce a fabulous addition to our entertainment line-up! As our Guests leave the Livery Hall for after dinner drinks in the Court Dining Room, they will be greeted by the tunes of Trav 'saXingh' Panesar, International Pro Saxophonist.

Trav 'saXingh' Panesar is a professional and versatile saxophonist and entertainer - one of the UK's finest live DJ accompanists. saXingh’s unique sax-playing abilities, combined with his captivating showmanship, promises to have us reeling in nothing short of amazement. He's highly regarded amongst the dance music industry and has had the pleasure of accompanying some of the world's greatest DJs and producers including Groove Armada, Kenny Dope, Kerri Chandler, Joey Negro, Mark Doyle, Dimitri from Paris, Quentin Harris, Onsulade, Karizma, Seamus Haji and the Godfather of house music, Marshall Jefferson. Furthermore, he has travelled extensively to perform in front of fantastic crowds in Asia, South America and Europe, including a memorable performance at the synonymous Space in Ibiza for Hed Kandi.

Keeping a few surprises up his sleeve, saXingh will be entertaining us with a mix of Post Modern Jukebox songs. We encourage you to look him up on his social media and have a listen on youtube!

Drapers' Hall
You will be in the presence of greatness from the minute you enter the magnificent Drapers’ Hall!

Located in the heart of the City of London, Drapers’ Hall provides a majestic setting for Rafiki Thabo Foundation’s Inaugural Gala Dinner. On the site of the present Drapers’ Hall, once part of the Augustinian Priory, Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex and Chief Minister to Henry VIII built his palace in the 1530s. After his execution in July 1540, King Henry VIII bought the hall for the sum of 1,800 marks (approximately £1,200). Since 1543 the property has been owned by the Guild of Drapers.

Drapers’ Hall boasts magnificent interiors creating a stunning backdrop to our fundraising event. While steeped in history, the Hall is recognisable from films & TV programmes such as The King’s Speech, The Apprentice and The Great British Menu. Our guests will enjoy exquisite in-house catering, served by Drapers’ Hall's experienced and dedicated team. It was this very same team who in May 2017 ensured Her Majesty The Queen had a delightful visit! Princess Anne is also a frequent visitor.

Do take the opportunity to read about Drapers' Hall's incredible history and the splendid artwork on display on their website

The choice of Drapers’ Hall as the venue for our Inaugural Gala Dinner was not only driven by our desire to offer our guests and supporters a most memorable and enjoyable evening. We also believe that the Drapers' Company’s core activity of supporting charities and education provides an affinity with our work and the core reason for organising our fundraising gala. Supporting education has been one of the primary aims of The Drapers’ Company for centuries and continues to be the main focus of the Company’s grant making today.

Order of Events
We look forward to welcoming you to our amazing Inaugural Gala Dinner. From the minute you purchase your ticket(s) you will be contributing to the important work we do at Rafiki Thabo and enabling us to do even more! In addition to feeling fantastic about supporting a great cause you can also look forward to a fabulous evening! Here is what you can expect:
Make sure you arrive for 6:45pm to enjoy every moment
  1. Welcome through Drapers’ Hall Throgmorton Street entrance
  2. Guest registration
Champagne reception in the magnificent Court Dining Room and Drawing Room
  1. Musical entertainment with an African twist from iyatraQuartet
  2. Mind-bending tricks from Magician Ben Williams who has impressed Dynamo and David Blaine as well as countless celebrities
Gala Dinner in the stunning Livery Hall
  1. Three Courses, including ½ bottle wine, still & sparkling water, glass of Port, coffee and Petit Fours
  2. Welcome from Jon Uglow, Founder of Rafiki Thabo and Chair of Trustees
  3. Silent auction and table raffle running throughout the evening
  4. Exclusive screening of Rafiki Thabo's first ever film
  5. Live auction hosted by auctioneering royalty Edward Rising
  6. More amazing magic from Ben Williams
  7. Guest Speaker Mark Webber, Formula F1 legend, FIA World Champion and Outdoor Enthusiast
After Dinner Drinks in the Court Dining Room
  1. Saxophone performance from Trav 'saXingh' Panesar
  2. Opportunity to mingle and continue to admire the stunning Drapers’ Hall
  3. Drinks available to purchase from the bar (card only)
  4. Auction payment collection from the lucky winning bidders
Carriages at midnight
  1. You may wish to take advantage of one of the special offers we have negotiated with our partner hotels for the event

Dress Code: BLACK TIE

Our Mission
To support individuals and their communities in Africa through education.
Our Vision
That young people will be empowered through education to fulfil their potential and initiate positive change in their communities.