Cape Cultural Collective celebrates its 15th anniversary

The steering committee of the Cape Cultural Collective, from left, Chris Blaauw, June Knight, Chadwin Nel, Leeroy Jansen, Vusumizi Mpofu, Elizabeth Schutter, Kay Jaffer and Mansoor Jaffer.

The Cape Cultural Collective (CCC), which aims to create change in the country through performing arts, celebrated its 15th anniversary last Saturday March 19.

Their milestone was celebrated at Community House, in Salt River, and was attended by various performing groups from all over Cape Town who work with CCC.

The event was made more special with the 10th anniversary of the Rosa Choir, a CCC project.

One of the founding members of CCC, Mansoor Jaffer says it was an overwhelming experience knowing how they have reached and interacted with people from all over Cape Town.

Mr Jaffer says the main goal in forming the CCC was to make a contribution to the transformation of society through arts and culture.

Mr Jaffer says the Rosa Choir has a cross-section of members. “Many of them performed for the first time in two years in front of a audience,” he says.

The Rosa Choir has over 28 members who come from areas including Muizenberg, Hout Bay, Langa, Sea Point, Mitchell’s Plain, Wynberg, Grassy Park and Hanover Park. It also has a growing youth choir that comes from areas including Manenberg, Nyanga and Kalksteenfontein.

Captain of the Rosa Choir, Chris Blaauw, says being with the choir has taught him to work with different people.

He says the choir is open to all backgrounds, cultures and religious groups.

“We had the opportunity to perform at the Artscape, Joseph Stone Auditorium, and even perform at functions and weddings as well,” he says.

Mr Blaauw says they did their rehearsals all over Cape Town at venues such as Langa High, Oude Molen Echo Village, at a Rondebosch church hall and at Community House. “We tried to work in different areas,” he says.

Mr Blaauw says over the past two years they could not perform due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

He says they recently started rehearsing at Wynberg Parks and have done some rehearsals over Zoom.

He says they are expected to do their first live show in July but will confirm the details closer to the time.

The CCC has formed partnerships with various performing arts organisations over the years.

Director of Likwezi Arts, Pamela Mtati who mentors young girls from Nyanga and Gugulethu in contemporary dance, is also a board member of CCC.

“I have built a strong working relationship with Cape Cultural Collective who has always invited our dancers to perform in any events that they are having,” she says.

Founding member of the Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies, Soraya Salie says it’s special to celebrate the CCC’s 15th anniversary as her organisation is celebrating its 15th anniversary as well.

The Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies are a free wellness club that promotes health by doing aerobics movements.

“We excited to be part of their journey and celebration,” she says.

Traditional music performer and music lecturer at Stellenbosch University, Ncebekazi Manukwana says music can break down barriers.

“It has been a difficult two years with Covid-19 and emotionally, so just to experience today was positive,” she says.

Ms Manukwana, also a board member of the CCC, says she is proud of their milestone and hopes there will be many more in the future.

As a non-profit, they rely on support from private donors as well corporations.

Mr Jaffer says they want to continue doing more projects.

He says they will be working with the Wesley Practising School choir and have also launched three new programmes.

“One is CCC recording, where we will record our songs in a professional studio, we also have the environmental programme for the youth, which will teach them more about the environment and will explore the link between the nature and arts,” he says.

Mr Jaffer says they will also work on their music lessons programme which will teach new members guitar, keyboard, recorder and other instruments.

He says they will also be launching a poetry book later in the year and will get back to doing concerts again.

The Rosa Choir performing at the event.
The Likwezi Arts dance troupe, from left, Inathi Kilawushe, Zintle Mgengwana, Zenande Boyce, Zanele Mketsu and Odwa Dziba.
The Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies did a display at the event.