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SOUTH AFRICA HOUSE CINEMA (article first published : 2005-11-20)

South African Minister of Arts and Culture, Dr Pallo Jordan, recently opened the doors to a new £95,000 state-of-the-art cinema at South Africa House in London. This was accompanied by the launch of a special scholarship designed to help talented young South African filmmakers study in the UK at the National Film and Television School (NFTS).

The refurbishment of the High Commission cinema, including digital projection and surround-sound, will provide South African filmmakers for the first time with a venue to showcase their films, documentaries and shorts in the heart of central London. It is the first major refurbishment of the South Africa House cinema for many decades.

Hosted by the South African High Commissioner to the UK, Dr Lindiwe Mabuza, the event was graced by a number of high profile guests including the internationally acclaimed screen composer Dr Trevor Jones, Sir Sydney Samuelson CBE, who has masterminded the renovation and NFTS Director, Mr Nik Powell.

“Of all the cinema projects I have been involved in during the past 60 years or so, the one at South Africa House is certainly the most satisfying,” said Sir Sydney Samuelson. “Firstly, it will be a state-of-the-art showcase for the emerging, young filmmakers of South Africa. Secondly, it has been created through the financial goodwill and technical expertise of many supporters in the UK. What a privilege it is for me to have been the one asked to put together such an imaginative idea.”

The refurbishment was made possible by the generous support of Odeon Cinema, The Dorset Foundation and contributions from private donors and benefactors. Further information from Mabet van Rensburg on (020) 7451 7167.




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