Six young performers are one step closer to fulfilling their dream of being one of three successful students to be awarded a share of R315 000 towards a scholarship to study performing arts.
This opportunity is granted to them as part of the 7th Annual ACT | DALRO | Nedbank Performing Arts Scholarships Programme – which encourages youths between the ages of 18 and 25, who aren’t considered professionals, and wish to pursue undergraduate studies in the performing arts, to participate in a national competition.
For the first time this year, ACT visited all nine provinces in the country scouting for talent which resulted in these top six finalists being chosen. The top three who win will be awarded grants of R150,000, R105,000 and R60,000 to further their studies at any accredited South African tertiary institution of their choice. The regional rounds attracted the participation of 194 candidates – showing the growth of the programme since its inception in 2009.
“The standard of auditions in areas where aspirant performers have less access to development opportunities is surprising and encouraging. We are delighted that our national search for passion and potential yielded great results with five of our finalists coming from areas in the country considered as under-served,” says ACT CEO Pieter Jacobs.
After the nationwide search for the ultimate performer, regional judges scoped more than 776 performance items, looking for individuals with passion and talent in singing, dancing and acting. This year’s six finalists are: Carla Smith (17), Andiswa Mbolekwa (19), Caleb Heynes (19), Masego Moloto (20), Jacques Mouton (22) and Emelda Tshegohatso Mothelesi (23).
“Year seven! Wow! Once again DALRO is incredibly proud to be part of this amazing programme. Our passion for the stimulation, development and growth of the performing arts is our driving force, and that’s why it’s so important for programmes like this to exist. We would like to congratulate the finalists on their selection and wish them the best of luck with final performances. At DALRO we feel that it’s important to not only keep performing arts alive by means of our day-to-day business, but to also give back to the industry, by contributing to this programme, which has for years now, helped to ensure that our country’s future stars have opportunities that will help to make their dreams come true”, says Supervisor for Theatrical Rights at DALRO, André Cloete.
The finalists will join the creative team comprising industry professionals from 6 to 12 October in Johannesburg, where they will undergo intensive rehearsals in preparation for the final round hosted for the first time by the Market Theatre in Johannesburg’s Newtown Precinct.
“Since inception, the Performing Arts Scholarship Programme has unearthed great talent, proving that South Africa has a lot of hidden gems that when discovered and polished, can indeed play an integral role in the socio-economic development of our country. As a bank for all, Nedbank will continue to provide our communities with the resources they require to make things that really matter happen,” says Tobie Badenhorst, Head of Sponsorships and Cause Marketing at Nedbank.
- Carla Smith: Capetonian Carla has had a passion for entertaining since she was young – according to her mom, she could act before she could walk. Carla was a member of the Tygerberg Children’s Choir when the choir won three gold medals in the Olympic Choir Games. She was also runner up in the KykNET National Acting Competition. Carla’s parents have always supported her zest for acting, singing and dancing, and she always spots them from the stage when performing.
- Andiswa Mbolekwa: Andiswa attends the Lady Grey Arts Academy in the Eastern Cape. Her passion for the performing arts is evident in her outstanding drama, singing and dance skills. This triple-threat has been acknowledged for her Outstanding Work in the Passion Play, and has been awarded Best Female Vocalist, Best Female Actress and Best Female Contemporary Dancer. She has also received her Colours in Music, as well as a Trophy as choir soprano for the Altech Concert.
- Caleb Heynes: Art-loving Caleb Heynes is currently finishing his matric at the Lady Grey Arts Academy, where he is Head Boy. Hailing from Aliwal North, Caleb studies dance, drama and music. He is also known for his skills as a poet and rapper. Among his many performance credits, Caleb played Riff in West Side Story, as well as being featured on ATKV and the Passion Play.
- Masego Moloto: Kimberley-based Masego Moloto is a lover of music, dance and the arts as a whole. Poetry Club, Mayibuye Dance Academy, Drama Club and Choir are where Masego fully expresses her emotions and are the platforms that will ensure that she achieves her dreams. Among her many achievements, Masego has received the 2013 Student of the Year Trophy from Mayibuye Dance Academy and a 2014 certificate for Best Spanish Student. Masego feels that physical expression, music and emotion are the fundamentals of life.
- Jacques Mouton: Jacques, from Louis Trichardt in Limpopo, is passionate about music, dance and acting. He has a desire to excel in a variety of arts disciplines. As well as playing a number of musical instruments, including the guitar, piano and drums, Jacques dances the cha-cha, tango and waltz. He is also a notable singer/songwriter, having won a competition. With an unquenchable love for the stage, Jacques dream is to be a full-time musician and actor because art is what he lives for.
- Emelda Tshegohatso Mothelesi: Kimberley-based performer Tshegohatso matriculated from Vuyolwethu High School. While cricket and writing are Tshegohatso’s hobbies, her main passion is dance. Tshegohatso has mastered Latin, ballroom, ballet, contemporary and Spanish dance. She has participated in numerous competitions, and among her many achievements, has come first in Latin.
- Raymond Motadi (MC): 20-Year-old Raymond hails from Lephalale in Limpopo and currently studies musical theatre at the Tshwane University of Technology. He is outspoken, and has a passion for entertaining. Raymond presents the breakfast show and an evening talk-show on TshwaneFM, which he balances with his studies. He has also started an LGBT youth organisation called Rainboukidz. Raymond sees MCing the ACT | DALRO | Nedbank Scholarships Programme as the beginning stages of him making an impact in the South African entertainment industry.
Author: Gilly Hemphill
The following two tabs change content below.