Dr Nomafrench Mbombo, Western Cape Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport, met the core team of Artscape, a public entity of the National Department of Arts and Culture (DAC), in Cape Town today.
The Artscape Theatre building belongs to the Western Cape Government and the 100 staff members, paid by the DAC, made no secret of their appetite to take the arts to the people and to bring the people to the arts. After listening to an overview of all the activities at Artscape by CEO Michael Maas, Dr Mbombo engaged with various role players in the ISibaya room.
The Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport (DCAS) supports activities such as the rural outreach programmes co-hosted by Artscape and DCAS including the forthcoming choral music festival in Hessequa Municipality in Heidelberg. This programme is part of celebrating the 20 years of democracy in the rural part of the province. A further programme is envisaged in the Cape Winelands later this year.
Director of Audience Development and Education Marlene le Roux proudly reported on the Western Cape Government footprint in the Artscape business. There is a healthy partnership with the DCAS Mass participation; Opportunity and access; Development and growth (MOD) Programme which resulted in one of the highlights of the Western Cape Freedom Day celebrations: a play called “Nyasha”. Another success story is linked to the accredited training in Arts and Culture Management on Community Level through the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP).
Dr Mbombo took a keen interest in the incubator programme where organisations are mentored through all the stages, not only to perform professionally in their own environment, but to eventually end up on the stage of Artscape. She was given a behind-the-scenes tour of the facilities and spent some time tapping creative energy from the students in the Resource Centre.
Afterwards, Dr Mbombo met with the management of the arts organisations that utilise the Artscape Theatre Complex on a regular basis. These include Cape Town City Ballet, Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra, Jazzart, Dance for All and Cape Town Opera.
DCAS is proud to bring people from different arts and culture genres and diverse backgrounds together and supports communities and professional organisations.