Concerts SA supports national and SADC regional touring

The SAMRO Foundation is proud to announce the results of the June 2017 round of the Concerts SA Music Mobility Fund. Initiated in 2013, this fund offers opportunities for South African musicians to undertake live music tours across southern Africa. A total of 16 applications were successful and will be supported in South Africa (10 tour projects) and in the SADC region (6 tour projects).

Since inception, the Music Mobility Fund has supported more than 150 tours through 8 funding rounds, and has featured artists like Freshlyground, Tu Nokwe, Tlokwe Sehume, Lindiwe Maxolo, DJ Lag, Wendy Oldfield or Madala Kunene.

The Music Mobility Fund has enabled more than 600 musicians to tour across all South African provinces as well as 10 countries in southern Africa (Botswana, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Swaziland, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia, Namibia and Madagascar), playing almost 800 shows to over 50 000 people, spanning genres from jazz to indigenous music, from folk to hip-hop, kwaito and gqom.

The projects selected for regional (SADC) touring in the June 2017 round are:

  • Asanda Mqiki’s septet tour from Port Elizabeth to Maputo;
  • 9-piece Durban-based band Blvck Crystals first regional tour to Mozambique;
  • Drummer Bernice Boikanyo’s quintet performances in Zambia and Karibu Festival (Tanzania);
  • Percussionist Tlale Makhene’s 1-month album launch tour, presenting Swazi Gold across Botswana, Swaziland and Mozambique;
  • Saxophonist Sisonke Xonti premiering his debut album Iyonde in Lesotho;
  • Pianist Thandi Ntuli presenting her 2nd album in Mozambique, Tanzania and Swaziland. Thandi Ntuli is also semi-finalist on the Jazz category at the 2017 SAMRO Overseas Scholarship Competition.

This round’s recipients for national touring support are Michael Ferguson, Lucas Senyatso, Bheki Khoza, Mabuta, Pedro Espi-Sanchis’s XyloFun, Andile Yenana’s Beyond Octave Trends, Pool’s Rhythm Analysis collaboration (Kesivan Naidoo & Silo “Elektradam” Andrian), African Rhythm Productions, Kinsmen, and Bombshelter Beast.

The final selection was based on alignment with the objectives of the Mobility Fund and conditions as set out in the call for proposals. Concerts SA project manager Violet Maila says: “This latest round of the Music Mobility Fund received 141 applications from established and emerging musicians from across the music spectrum. With the quality of submissions increasing year on year, the task of selection was extremely difficult for our dedicated panellists. The thought and organisation evident in the submissions made were inspiring, and we wish all successful applicants safe travels and enriching tours!”

Former grant recipient Msaki says: “Having Concerts SA as a partner, collaborator and advisor through the Mobility Fund has been powerful and freeing. Every independent musician knows that hitting the road is a challenge but when you have a 10-piece band, challenge might not be the most accurate word. Concerts SA gave me the power of logistical problem solving. And since performing at Bushfire in Swaziland as part of our tour, other festivals have booked us after seeing us there. A watershed career changing opportunity, made possible by the Music Mobility Fund.”

The Music Mobility Fund is administered by Concerts SA, a joint South African/Norwegian initiative housed under the auspices of the Stakeholder Hub within the SAMRO Foundation. It receives financial, administrative and technical support from the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the SAMRO Foundation and Concerts Norway.