By Ovayo Milisa Novukela
As a critical partner and sponsor of the National Arts Festival (NAF), the Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency (ECPTA) hosted a media briefing at The 1820 Settlers National Monument in Makhanda this week to confirm their partnership and collaboration.
ECPTA Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Vuyani Dayimani, confirmed that they would continue investing and collaborating with NAF in the years to follow.
Dayimani indicated that the Eastern Cape has a lot to offer. “Eastern Cape is our home, and we need to invite people to view what our home has got to offer; it is a place that is full of history, heritage, and sites to consider that will leave our tourists speechless, wanting to come back,” he said. He adds that the Amazwi Museum of Literature Museum is featured as one of the top 30 places to view in the Eastern Cape.
National Arts Festival CEO Monica Newton also indicated that the NAF board has collaborated with the National Arts Council in a three-year deal, “This partnership has allowed adding more support to the curated programme, which is fantastic news for everybody”, said Newton.
She indicated that Fringe shows represent 54% of ticket sales which she and her board are happy about, as these shows take home 90% of profits made from their shows. “These are people that are willing to take the risk for the passion of the art and craft, and we must commend them and support them by watching their shows and sharing with as many people as possible,” said Newton.
Newton also gave an update on the daily running of the Festival. “The festival has been defined by spacing and timing, with load-shedding being a significant factor hence that all venues have backup power to ensure all performances do happen and people get the full experience of the festival.” She added that one of the shows, Dog Rose, was a great play to the point that one of the audience members went to the Box Office Room to buy more tickets to the show and other shows for her and her friends.