Judging by the unhappiness of Lebo M, John Kani and the cream of black theatre personalities, all is not well in the South African performing arts.
Lebo M and many others complained bitterly this week of the perceived racial bias at the annual Naledi Awards. Aggravating a very raw nerve, organiser Dawn Lindberg has subsequently made snide derogatory remarks. She said she remained in South Africa to fight apartheid (albeit from her plush Houghton residence in a segregated white suburb) while Lebo M was overseas in exile.
I find it strange that in this supposedly transformed industry with a majority black population, that only three out of the 17 judges were black. Did the organisers not think it would lead to a perception of Eurocentric judging?
I wonder if the calls for black advocacy groups are misplaced? Surely black icons like Lebo M and Kani can't be denied a place in the sun in their own country.
Azania Mboya, Hillbrow