Spring Day sends good vibrations through Pretoria



This year’s annual Lentedag (Spring Day) event drew 7000 people to the Botanical Gardens on Wednesday 23 September. Those who attended last year’s event were in for a surprise with Lekker Lentedag’s new and improved setup. An escape from the sweltering heat could be found in the tented area provided by Flying Fish or on the dance floor hidden in the forest section of the garden, and if that wasn’t enough, students could turn to Aquavita for the relief of a water slide. The issue of last year’s depleted bar supply was also addressed, and the bigger bar area and greater stock count kept lines in check and thirsts at bay.

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Taiwan youth ambassador programme visits UP


On 16 September a delegation of youth ambassadors from Taiwan presented a production at UP called Energetic new Taiwan. The program intended to showcase Taiwanese culture to the rest of the world, as well as Taiwan’s focus on global concerns such as humanitarian aid and sustainable development.

The program was started in 2009 by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of China, which selected 160 students from different universities in Taiwan to take part. These students are divided into ten groups and travel the world, visiting 35 countries to show Taiwan to the world.

The production centred on an exploration of Taiwan, including the cuisine, art, culture and natural environment. Each aspect was demonstrated by dance and music. Although the performers don’t come from a professional dancing background and are studying in a wide range of fields, the team aimed to have a spirit of professionalism and teamwork in their work.

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Three years of Hello Ambassador

Three years of Hello Ambassador


On 4 and 5 September the third annual Hello Ambassador creative festival took place at the Sci-Bono Centre in Newtown, Johannesburg. The event featured talks by various speakers from several creative fields.

The festival also featured workshops by the speakers involved, along with the yearly creative expo which showcased crafts like screen-printing, woodwork, and “live-drawing”.

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Principal’s Concert 2015 highlights South Africa’s heritage



The Principal’s Concert: Sounds of South Africa 2015 is a UP Arts production featuring the University of Pretoria Symphony Orchestra, Wind band and Jazz band, Tuks Camerata, the UP Youth Choir, UP Ovuwa and the drama department. It was held on 2, 3 and 6 September 2015.


The concert showcased renowned songs that are synonymous with South African heritage. Vice-chancellor and principal of the university Prof. Cheryl de la Rey noted, “The 2015 programme showcases the sounds of South Africa, epitomising the unique and diverse musical heritage inspired by both the local and global contexts that have contributed to our national identity – truly fitting in the year in which South Africa celebrates 21 years of democracy.”


The concert opened with an instrumental overture performed by the orchestra. The Ovuwa cultural ensemble performed the songs “Homeless”, “Senzenina”, and teamed up with the jazz band to perform “Ipi’Ntombi the warrior” and “Kgomo”.


Tuks Camerata performed “Siyalobola” and “Nearer my God to Thee”, with Theo van Wyk accompanying on the organ. They performed together with the orchestra on Laurika Rauch’s hit, “Stuur groete aan Mannetjies Roux”.


The UP Youth Choir performed a medley of Cape minstrel songs as well as a medley of South African gospel music. They also teamed up with Camerata and Ovuwa on a “Sounds of South Africa” choral medley.


The drama department performed a dance routine with accompaniment by the orchestra, and also sang “When you come back” with the jazz band. Nikita Mokgware from the drama department performed a captivating poem, adding a spoken word element to the otherwise music-focused production.


Music student and soloist Monica Mhangwana performed “A cry, a smile, a dance” with the orchestra, as well as “African dream” with the full cast. The whole cast gave an enthusiastic performance of Johnny Clegg’s “Scatterlings of Africa”, signalling the end of the production.


The concert concluded with instrumentals from the orchestra and the jazz band, making for a memorable showcase of UP’s talent.


Image provided.

Arts Alive 2015 to light up Jo’burg

Arts Alive 2015 to light up Jo’burg


The 2015 Arts Alive festival will be running from  5-27 September in Johannesburg. The festival was founded in 1992 and aims to celebrate creativity in many different artistic genres. The streets and theatres of Johannesburg will be lit up for the 23rd year in a row by the festival’s various eclectic events. The event gives people the opportunity to witness some of the best talents Jo’burg has to offer in fields such as theatre, music, dance and fine arts.

The festival aims to solidify the city’s status as the country’s culture capital and to create a space for cultural celebration. This will be the first time the festival will be run by a City entity, the Joburg City Theatres. In this instalment of the festival there will be a range of award winning artists such as Angelique Kidjo from Benin, and Sly and Robbie, the Jamaican drum and bass duo.

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