Big money for all creative fields
THE arts and culture sector in Gauteng will be pleased with the funding that is going to be available to their projects.
It seems the authorities are finally realising the very important role artists and musicians play in the lives of their communities.
For many years artists in Gauteng have been complaining that being connected with the sports department has resulted in resources being allocated disproportionately.
Artists have not been happy that sports benefited a lot more than the arts though art plays as vital a role in society as sport.
In the latest budget Lebogang Maile, Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation MEC, said arts and culture would receive more than R80-million.
"Arts and culture is a vital cog in building a nation that is united, non-racial, non-sexist and democratic," Maile said.
Arts has been allocated R81.994-million for creative industries, heritage, the Gauteng Film Commission and libraries, Maile said.
"A total of R14.830-million has been allocated for the implementation of the recently approved strategies on music, performing and visual arts and crafts," Maile said.
"The strategy is our guide on the agenda for taking the Mzansi Golden Economy forward.
"We are gearing for the implementation of the recently approved creative industries sub-sector strategies for music and performing and visual arts and crafts."
The framework will also see three craft hubs benefitting that include the glass beads , ceramics and the recycling and local market access projects that are located in various areas across the province.
Money will also be allocated to South Africa's popular festivals.
These include the Joy of Jazz festival that annually takes place in August, Summer Splash, Music of the 80s Extravaganza, Spring Day Music Explosion, Back to the City Hip Hop Festival, Feather Awards and the Moshito Music Conference and Exhibition.
"These festivals and exhibitions are also expected to benefit the various related industries, including local tourism," Maile said.
"For developing artists, the department will strengthen the Puisano Live music programme, which in the last financial year had 177 musicians participating in the auditions and 154 musicians participating in the showcases."
And having hosted the Gauteng Carnival for the past few years, the 2012 edition will be elevated to one of the premier events in Gauteng's entertainment calendar, of which the street parade will with a music festival at Orlando Stadium in Soweto.
An allocation of R3.830-million has been put aside for mass participation events such as the Ishashalazi Theatre, Poetry, Traditional and Motjeko Dance programmes.
The Gauteng Film Commission, which was recently moved to the Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation Department from the Department of Economic Affairs, has been allocated R23.4 million.
Maile said that 192 films were shot in Gauteng in the last financial year.
The biggest segment of the budget allocation went to libraries.
"An amount of R69.234 million has been made available for the Library and Archival function," Maile said. "This is for the construction of three new libraries in the current financial year."
"We look forward to meeting our target to build 20 new libraries in Gauteng by 2014.