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Min Mthethwa launches Debut Fund Programme in New Brighton

By Afikile Lugunya - Jul 14, 2017
Min Mthethwa launches Debut Fund Programme in New Brighton

The Minister of Arts And Culture, Nathi Mthethwa, on Thursday launched the Debut Fund Programme at Nongoza Jebe Community Hall, in New Brighton, Port Elizabeth, in partnership with the Eastern Cape Department of Arts and Culture and Business and Arts South Africa.

Speaking at the event, Minister Mthethwa said that with this initiative, government is aiming to assist emerging artists from the ages of 18-35 with things like launching their albums.

“Together with the Business Arts South Africa, we are focussing on those, who want to help to start up, especially the youth, who do not get the opportunity. The fund will provide opportunities to develop new local content and for that all important 'break' in their career," he said.

"Linked to the funding will be a mentorship programme to make sure that these aspirant professionals have the best possible advice and guidance.”

The Minister said that the Department of Arts and Culture together with Business and Arts South Africa are forming a committee that is going to oversee the process.

He said that he has come across a lot of talent from young people, who, unfortunately, never get a chance to be showcased.

“Some of that work is quality it’s something you would wish South Africa to know but they don’t have someone to assist them and this fund is about intervening in that,” said Minister Mthethwa.

Also speaking at the event, Business and Arts South Africa's Head of Programmes and Development, Lonwabo Mavuso, said that the programme is there to intervene where artists are struggling to get to the market.

“We will train them in business skills, to be creative entrepreneurs, then there will be grounds components where we will be assisting them to move to the next level of their professionalism,” he said.

The launch afforded various artists to raise their concerns to the Minister, which caused a lot of drama as old people complained about not being included in the programmes.

“I’m very sad to hear that you are talking about the ages of 18 to 35; now the question is, who is going to assist us at the ages of 60-65 - because we were not lucky to receive assistance just like the young stars you talk about,” many older artists asked the minister.

They were advised to apply for funding or call 082 494 9751 or visit [email protected].