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MBDA invites artists to become ‘friends of the Athenaeum’

Apr 21, 2017
MBDA invites artists to become ‘friends of the Athenaeum’

The Mandela Bay Development Agency (MBDA) is inviting artists in Nelson Mandela Bay to join the “Friends of the Athenaeum” group.

Members will receive numerous benefits when using Athenaeum building in Central, Port Elizabeth, including free WiFi, 30% discount on room hire fees, 25% discount on theatre hire, a desk which can be utilized as a meeting area or creative space, be invited to creative industry events, early bird bookings for theatre productions, among others.

“The Athenaeum is a fantastic hub for the creative sector in Nelson Mandela Bay. The activities that we host here are aimed at making that vision practical,” commented Oyama Vanto, Project Leader: Job Creation & Tourism Infrastructure Development at MBDA.

The membership fee is R100, paid once a year for the above mentioned benefits.

The Athenaeum forms part of a tourism route known as the Arts Journey in Port Elizabeth and offers venue hire, exhibition hosting and curation, event management services, bar services, marketing and promotion, and service provider management.

“We are very passionate about keeping art alive in Nelson Mandela Bay by creating opportunities for artists so they can grow in the industry,” he added.

The Athenaeum, declared a national monument in 1980, is located on Belmont Terrace, flanked by historic Port Elizabeth streets, Military Road and Castle Hill in the suburb of Central near the Port of Port Elizabeth. The building is one of the few examples of the classical style of architecture in the city and was designed by George William Smith.

The building forms part of a successful submission by the MBDA to the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund (NLDTF), submitted in July 2009 for funding. It was specifically aimed at upgrading a range of art facilities and promoting projects within the Port Elizabeth inner city. The proposal was called the ‘Arts, culture, environment and heritage 2010 special call – Application for arts, culture, environment and heritage projects in public spaces during the 2010 Soccer World Cup.’

A special event will be held for artists wishing to become members and current members on Tuesday, 25 April, 2017 from 18:00. For more details call Asanda Mlata on (041) 585 1041 or email manager@theAthenæum.co.za.

Image: TOGETHERNESS: The Friends of the Athenaeum host ongoing jam/network sessions at the Athenaeum building in Central, Port Elizabeth.