Thursday, 29 March 2012

Some steps forward for Hamburg Artist Retreat

On the 8th of March, Aspire organized a fun day for the families of Hamburg community together with volunteers from the Keiskamma Trust.

From Aspire blog:

Hamburg’s ‘old’ community hall was all hustle and bustle on a beautiful Saturday morning. Hordes of children gathered to tackle a treasure hunt that would lead them around the small town. 10 groups were sent on their way to master 6 stations that would lead them to the finish line.

Each station requested the kids to complete a task before revealing the answer to one of the 6 Artists Retreat questions. The final station was back at the hall were each child left their foot print on a tile.

As a reward for the hard work and the successful mastering of the Artists Retreat treasure hunt, every participant received a T-shirt.

The Keiskamma Music Academy kids blessed us with their talent, and the Hamburg Capoeira group performed before everyone dug into a well deserved meal.

Now as you can see the Children of Hamburg have left their footprints…

Now come and leave yours !!!

Visit Aspire blog:

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Art Project: Red Shoe Workshop by Sally Scott - 27th February-2nd March 2012

It was with great anticipation that I drove down the dusty rural road into Hamburg, where for the next four days I would be facilitating a Red Shoe Workshop with the artists of the Keiskamma Trust. I knew that the workshop would be hugely beneficial for them, but I also knew that the experience of working with these skilled embroiderers was going to be exciting for me. I knew that the combination of challenge and skill was going to bring some interesting results, and as it turned out, I was definitely not to be disappointed. The group rose to the challenge and the results speak for themselves.

The focus of this particular workshop was to show participants how to create something original and unique from their personal life experience. The participants had all expressed a desire to become artists in their own right, and so throughout the workshop we discussed what it means to be an artist and what this role demands of one. I emphasised that the process is every bit as important as the product, and that if they kept that in mind their work could only get stronger.

The participants were intensely focussed and worked very hard to complete their shoes within the limited time frame. So it was with much satisfaction that at 2pm on the final day, the artists were able to sit back and admire the products of their labour and to share their stories and feelings about the experience of the workshop.

I was delighted with the results and feedback and the shoes are absolutely gorgeous, each pair being as unique as the individual who made them.

It is hoped that the lessons the artists have learned will stay with them forever and that the skills they have acquired will provide them with yet another means of earning much needed income.

It was a pleasure to work with such a talented group and I look forward to seeing them all again soon.

Sally Scott

Visit Sally Scott's website to view more photographs of the workshop:

Monday, 12 March 2012

Music Academy Students Prepare for Academic and Musical Success

Two Keiskamma Music Academy students, Khanyi and Yoliswa, have been settling into Grade 8 this term at Victoria Girls' High School in Grahamstown. The girls were accepted to the school as a result of their excellent achievements in music practical and theory exams, as well as their promise in other curriculum areas. After hearing the girls play at our Christmas concert, two donors – Anneke Viljoen and Peter Whelan – came forward to support this opportunity financially. Their generous offer, together with parental contributions, has covered tuition and hostel fees.

We had a busy time on the day before term started getting the girls kitted out and ready to begin their adventure. It was a lovely moment to see them emerge from the changing rooms at the school outfitters, new ties neatly knotted and sporting shiny new blazers and shoes!

Khanyi and Yoliswa are now happily settled into their busy academic life, continuing their music education there as well as contributing to Music Academy when they return for weekends or holidays.

We continue to look for potential places in East London and Grahamstown schools for our other talented young students. If you would like to consider helping to sponsor a “champion” student’s future, please get in touch with us to discuss this.

For our pupils still in Hamburg our German volunteer, Lisa, is offering Maths booster classes for Grade 9 to 11 pupils so that they are better prepared as they approach Matriculation. Lisa's drive in offering additional academic support may make the difference between our students passing Matric or not, as well as achieving university acceptance or not.

A music education has many benefits, equipping young people with necessary skills for all curriculum areas (see our web page, 'Benefits of a Music Education'). We know that our regular music lessons and workshops are laying a solid foundation for all our Music Academy students.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Easter Concerts in Port Alfred and Hamburg

Keiskamma Music Academy has been enjoying Hamburg’s beautiful summer weather as we rehearse for our upcoming Easter concerts in Port Alfred and Hamburg. Nothing puts a damper on rehearsals like wet weather, so we have been happy for lots of sunshine to enjoy when we take breaks from our hard practicing!

We are delighted to take part again in Port Alfred’s “Classics at the Castle” concert series on 31 March at Richmond House Museum and Music Room. Our performance begins at 17h00, and tickets are available in advance only, at Kowie News Agency. Contact Sue Gordon at 0824567437 / for more information.

Our concert programme features a friendship between Hamburg, Germany and our own Hamburg in the Eastern Cape. We are delighted to be joined by Paulus van der Merwe, a noted South African musician who currently works in Germany as principal oboist in both Hamburg’s NDR Symphony and the Wagner Festival Orchestra in Bayreuth. Paulus is renowned as international soloist and recording artist, and has taught since 1990 at the Luebeck Hochschule, where he is now professor.

Helen Vosloo, founder of Keiskamma Music Academy and one of South Africa’s top classical musicians, will join Paulus and a small group of Music Academy students for this performance. Until recently, Helen was Principal Flute with the Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO), and she continues to be part of the acclaimed Trio Hemanay with Malcolm Nay and Marian Lewin. Helen appears regularly as soloist with the JPO, COSA, Johannesburg Festival Orchestra, JMI, and MIAGI.

Our Port Alfred performance will be followed on 4 April with an Easter Concert in Hamburg, again featuring Paulus van der Merwe, Helen Vosloo, and students of the Keiskamma Music Academy. Both concerts will feature solo and chamber music, including music by Vivaldi, Marcello, and Telemann. Please join us in the Old Hall at 16h00 for a celebration of music-making! Contact 0826641190 / for more information.

The A.R.T. Show / Make Art Stop AIDS

From the 10th of February to the 4th of March 2012, the A.R.T. show took place in Duban.

Printed and embroidered version of the Keiskamma Guernica

"The A.R.T. Show has been curated by Carol Brown and David Gere, with major funding from the Andy Warhol Foundation. Additional support has been provided by the Ford Foundation and the School of the Arts and Architecture at the University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA)."
Click here to read more.