THEATRE OPPORTUNITY FOR YOUTH

AS YOUTH month swings into full action, more than 20 amateur arts groups will battle it out in a drama festival tomorrow.

AS YOUTH month swings into full action, more than 20 amateur arts groups will battle it out in a drama festival tomorrow.

The winner of the Battle of the Townships festival will get a big career break - to perform at the Playhouse Theatre in Durban.

The festival is organised by the Durban Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA).

It is aimed at township youths who work hard but whose productions are not recognised.

The groups are from townships in and around Durban, including Umlazi, KwaMashu, and Lamontville.

"In celebrating Youth Month we have decided to empower the youth by giving them exposure through this festival," said YMCA performing arts coordinator Sqiniseko Khumalo.

"Most youngsters in the townships are unemployed and when their productions do not succeed, they lose hope and opt for other ways of making money, often turning to crime," he said.

Khumalo, from Ntuzuma in Durban, struggled to make it in the arts when he started out. Today, he owns a production company and works in the performing department of the Durban YMCA.

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