Newcastle Arts Festival 2013
The second Newcastle Arts Festival has taken place in the township of Madadeni, Newcastle, KwaZulu Natal on the 27th, 28th & 29th of October2013.
The Newcastle Arts Festival kicked off with a jam packed energy as we were graced with an attendance and participation ofKZN Museum Services with an information desk filled with information aboutourheritage and some items that represent it. Also with us was the Carnegie ArtGallery – represented by Judy Jordan and Zama Mkhize – who gave a workshop to the kids on making and decorating their own puppets and the Fort Amiel Museum was represented by Louie Eksteen who is a very active soldier of the preservation of our heritage. Amongst these gracious people were Nelly Thwala of the KZNMuseum Services.
Beautiful arts displays were placedconceptually across 6 houses while others hosted muralists who painted a housethat agreed for the mural and others were workshop areas. The lovely hands thatmade the works which had been displayed were very excited about participating.The names include Bonkosi Artist Mhlanga, Nondumiso Mlotshwa, Mgcini Kubheka,Mbongeni Mlotshwa, Sifiso Pfiro. A joint effort in producing murals came fromSifiso Pfiro, Mgcini Kubheka, Pule “Macrope” Masigo, Wandile Wang Mbanjwa, Bonkosi Artist Mhlanga, Mbongeni Mlotshwa and Nondumiso Mlotshwa. The community also put a hand in the energy that was there as joined in painting the pavement into extraordinary colours, in a harmonious, unified way that is the building block of a strengthened community, the very reason why theNewcastle Creative Network chose the township.
As part of the plan to identify, uplift and develop the arts in the township, it then became time for the performances to take place and we had quite a number of groups ranging in ages 9 years old to adult. We had the delight of be amongst some of the greatest musicians in the country. Young groups that participated included the ever-confident YoungHip Hop Stars, Psyco, MKV Beats, Msizi, Thotho, Zuma, Funosh, Nkosana and manymore. Amongst other people who graced us were LSD and Wrong Button from FossilRecords, members of Unfamilia Systemz from Joburg such as the legendary BlaqFaith, Vice and White Shaddow also came in, Crazy Flowaz also came in, SOI alsocame in, a Maskandi group from Joburg known as Ozazise gave an energetic performance too. Our DJs were providing us with good music filled with positive charge, thanks to Jazz X Herbz Radio, Dj Mphikza and Blaq Faith.
The Newcastle Arts Festival was proudly brought to you by the gracious team of Newcastle Creative Network and all thepeople mentioned here. The team includes Dumisani Radebe, Phakiso Mokoena,Nkule Mabaso, Zama Twala, Slindile Nkosi, Muziwamadoda Mbatha, Zenzo Dhlamini and Cynthia Mabaso. The team would like to extend a word of appreciation to all the people were involved in making this an awesome time for all of us. A huge thank you towards the Maboneng team, which includes Siphiwe Ngwenya and Tebogo Ramabulana, to our parents for allowing us to invade the homes and gather for the purpose of art. One day it will all be worth it.
May we all stay conscious about the capability of art as a medium to bring about social cohesion, beautifying our living-space, educating, unification, spreading awareness, fighting crime and illiteracy in our respective environments.
May we share many more art experiences as we see you later on this month with an instalment of the Maboneng Township Arts Experience, in Madadeni on the 30th of November until the 1st of December 2013. The Maboneng Township Arts Experience is our partner organisation and has its origins in Alexandra township in Johannesburg and has been turning township houses into galleries and streets into performance districts since 2003. www.maboneng.com to see what they have done in other Gugulethu and Khayelitsha