By Staff Reporter
QWAQWA- Sport, Arts Culture and Recreation MEC Limakatso Mahasa confirmed that Premier Sefora Ntombela‘s announcement that the annual Mangaung Arts and Cultural Festival (Macufe) will be back this year but under a slightly different approach.
Mahasa said this when tabling her department’s budget for the financial year 2022/23 on Tuesday this week.
“As a clear demonstration of the gradual opening up of the space for implementation of programmes. the Premier, Mme Sefora Ntombela, has announced during her State of the Province Address (SOPA) that the Macufe will be back this year. We are delighted that this flagship programme which is the heart and soul of Free Staters will be coming back, even though not to the full extent that we are used to.”
She said the department is working on the modalities around the implementation of the programme.
“While we are looking at modalities, the following programmes will form an integral part of Macufe: Macufe Boxing Day, Golf Day, Soccer, Gospel and DJ’s will also find prominence in the event. In order to keep the artistic atmosphere alive in the province, the department will support the Free State Music and Food Festival (Afrofeast) in November.”
She said to mitigate impact of the cancellation of Macufe the
District Arts and Culture Festivals were staged in all districts.
“ This was a successful programme whose objective was also to assist in cushioning local artist against the loss of income caused by the pandemic. The feedback around this programme from artists was extremely positive.”
She also disclosed that the Homebrew Development Programme will be used as the platform to cultivate and identify artists for MACUFE activations, it will also serve as a feeder to Districts Arts and Culture Festivals.
“These kinds of initiatives are an added boost to the work that the department has already undertaken and they will continue in this financial year. The department has managed to assist 691 artists who were paid 5 thousand rands (R5000) each amounting to a total of 4 million rands (R4 000 000) for COVID-19 Relief.
“As part of the process towards the establishment of a Film Commission, progress has been made in this regard as the name of the commission was secured and will be known as the Free State Film Commission. The Free State should begin to tap into this sector not just as a creative and cultural platform but also an economic industry.
“The Choral Music Festival was staged in partnership with the Lengau Choral Music Association in QwaQwa. This was the much-anticipated event amongst choral music lovers who for over two years were not able to engage in choral music. For this reason, hundreds of choristers descended into QwaQwa for this event, also attracting participants from Lesotho and other provinces,” she concluded.