BACKGROUND TO EDUCATION AFRICA'S
ARTS AND CULTURE PORTFOLIO
Over the past number of years, Education Africa has arranged several International Arts & Culture Tours to provide disadvantaged learners with the opportunity to travel abroad and perform in front of a global audience. These young marimba players have wowed audiences in London, Vienna, Slovenia and New York whilst having had the opportunity to experience different cultures, countries and languages. Many have described such trips as "an opportunity of a lifetime". For many of the learners who have attended such a tour, it has been the first time that they have ever been outside their home town let alone in an airplane!
Unfortunately, the communities that would most benefit from an extra-mural marimba programme seldom get the opportunity to get involved due to:
1. A lack of funds to purchase instruments and equipment.
2. A lack of training.
Education Africa is involved in opening marimba hubs around South Africa because it sees the incredible educational value that marimba playing offers to children who are involved in this learning process.
WHY AN INTERNATIONAL MARIMBA AND STEELPAN FESTIVAL?
Education Africa launched The International Marimba and Steelpan Festival to create an awareness world-wide of the educational value of marimba playing and to create an International platform for our marimba and steelpan players in South Africa to perform on. As we, at Education Africa are also dedicated to giving our young children in South Africa the opportunity to travel and mix with young people from other parts of the world we are hoping to develop our already extensive International network even further through this International Festival.
SOCIAL COHESION IN SOUTH AFRICA AND THE WORLD
Social Cohesion is the cornerstone of what we do in all Education Africa's projects and in particular in our International Arts and Culture programmes. It drives us and motivates us to make a difference in our country and in the rest of the world. Young people are encouraged to play music together and interact and share knowledge through all our programmes and nowhere is it more evident than at the International Marimba and Steelpan Festival.
WHY STEELPANS AND MARIMBAS?
Many steelpan players play marimbas and vice versa and while the two types of instruments are totally different in layout, design and sound they complement each other beautifully when played together in ensemble. Steelpans as well as marimbas are played in many schools in South Africa as well as all around the world and it is wonderful to bring these two diverse traditional instruments together at our Festival.