Hello Community Arts Development Programme and Festival, hosted at the Breytenbach Theatre gave performers the opportunity to be on a professionally equipped stage in front of an audience for the first time, supported by DWR Distribution and the SOS Charity fund.
“We were presented with vast talent around Gauteng, and with the introduction of a poetry evening added to the theatre and music productions, we gained a new audience,” explained Wandile Mgcodo. “My highlight is always seeing the groups performing on a professional stage, for which to some, it’s the first time. Of course, we can’t forget the students, who are so passionate that you sometimes forget about all other problems.”
“For the students, the Community Arts Development Programme and Festival offers an experimental learning experience outside the box,” Wandile added. “The community groups, on the other hand, appreciate the opportunity given to them. To grow the festival, our plan is to involve more stakeholders in the art fraternity and put more efforts in marketing the project in order to attract more artists and to enlarge the audience.”
Duncan Riley of DWR and the SOS commented: “So many individuals in our industry went through the doors of Tshwane University of Technology. I feel it’s important to support Hardus and Wandile who are instilling a passion for the arts and a platform to express it.”
With various art forms on stage, the festival ended with the poplar musical production Gug’Othandayo, conceptualised by Gogos (grandmothers) who tell a story of their lives and the issues that come their way.
“Thank you to DWR Distribution and the SOS Charity Fund to help us fulfill this great vision,” Wandile concluded. “The funds donated assisted with the technical support and covered both the transport costs and logistics of the grandmothers who performed in the production Gug’othandanyo. I would also like to thank all the groups involved, the students, the Tshwane University of Technology and our partners for your assistance with “Hello”, a festival for and by the community.”