Concert to honour female artists

Pretoria – A concert to pay tribute to some of South Africa’s top female artists will wrap up Women’s Month at the State Theatre in Pretoria.

The star-studded line-up at the inaugural Tribute to Women concert is expected to dazzle South Africans on 29 August.

Some of the artists include South Africa’s famous songbirds, Sibongile Khumalo, Abigail Kubheka, Mary Makgatho, Mara Louw, Debra Fraser, and KB.

On Monday, women artists packed the National Library’s auditorium in Pretoria to interact with Minister of Arts and Culture Lulu Xingwana in preparation for the inaugural concert.

Xingwana said it was important to recognise women who have made significant contributions in the liberation struggle and in other spheres of life through a music concert.

“Women made a huge contribution in our society and we therefore, planned to close this women’s month with a concert to honour them. They have also made a historical, meaningful role in arts, culture and song,” she said.

According to the department’s head of performing arts and festivals, Germinah Nkadimeng, they saw it fit to involve artists in the initial planning of the concert that will commemorate women artists that have passed on and also those still alive.

“We want to hear your ideas on how best we could pay tribute to women artists. We are planning to stage the tribute annually. Next year we will hold discussions to include broader genres in order to enhance our strategic development.

“We extended an invitation to these artists because we wanted them to be involved from the very beginning of this initiative.

“Through this concert we want to recognise the huge contributions made by women in our communities, promote social cohesion as well as continuing with the huge work done by the late female musicians,” she said.

Legendary Kubheka said the initiative will help young and upcoming artists to understand the roots of the industry.

“Through this initiative, young female musicians will understand the road in the arts industry has no ending,” she said.

South African jazz and Afro-pop singer, Judith Sephuma said the platform created by Xingwana brought more hope and encouragement to female artists.

Another jazz diva, Gloria Bosman said the interaction with the minister and the women concert will certainly make the arts and culture industry to be taken seriously.

After listening to the inputs by the artists, Xingwana pledged to set-up a Gender Desk unit within her department which will specifically deal with the challenges and establish a database of all female artists in the arts and culture industry.

The concert will kick off at 16:00 on 29 August. – BuaNews

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