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NOT GRAHAMSTOWN (article first published : 1999-06-6)

Get into the mood of the Standard Bank National Arts Festival by sampling a range of shows and exhibits from KZN before they head off to Grahamstown. The third NOT the Grahamstown Festival runs at Durban High School from June 21 to 27 and aims to capture a little of the atmosphere and energy of a major arts festival.

While previous festivals offered a preview for Durban audiences of 10 local productions bound for the Standard Bank National Arts, this year’s programme also features innovative new KZN professional productions. Included in the line-up are Catherine Mace, the Actor’s Co-op, Ronnie Govender, Aldo Brincat, Charmaine Weir-Smith Ashley Dowds, Tim Wells, Mzwandile Kamang, Suzy Stengel, Ayn Adams, Bongani Ngwenya, Shireen James and the Fantastic Flying Fish Dance Company as well as works by leading KZN visual artists.

The festival is being staged in conjunction with Durban High School which has established a fine reputation for its cultural activities and projects. DHS provides the venue, infrastructure and catering for the festival and a percentage of the money raised goes towards school funds.

Organisers Aldo Brincat, Geoff Mace from DHS, technical advisor Michael Broderick and publicists Publicity Matters aim to create a "mini-festival" vibe with food stalls and buskers complementing the visual and performing arts.

While the project is self-funding, it is put together with a miniscule budget and organisers have all donated time and expertise. "In order for the festival to take wings, we need financial backing and major sponsorship,” says Illa Thompson from Publicity Matters. “If there are patrons and potential sponsors out there, please make contact with us so we can invite you on board and thereby make the NOT the Grahamstown Festival an artistic force to be reckoned with."

Book at Computicket or at the school prior to the performances. For details phone 202-9093.


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