Launched in 2009, the MTN BUSHFIRE Schools’ Festival was created to counter the lack of a formal arts curriculum in public schools. Preceding the main festival, this event works towards developing a unique platform of creative expression for young people in the country.
The MTN BUSHFIRE Schools’ Festival underlines that arts education has the capacity to empower students through knowledge, comprehensive sexual health education and individualized action.
An exciting development is that a number of partners (the National Curriculum Centre, the Ministry of Education and Training, the Swazi National Council for Arts and Culture, and the University of Swaziland) have come together to use the MTN BUSHFIRE Schools’ Festival as the structural basis for implementing a National Arts Curriculum in the secondary schools of Swaziland by 2016. The MTN BUSHFIRE Schools’ Festival will enable an educational consultant to assist in the design of an arts syllabus.
2013 MTN BUSHFIRE SCHOOLS FESTIVAL PROGRAMME
Tuesday 28th of May: Workshops for Local Teachers and Arts Facilitators
The 2013 programme opens with a workshop day for 50 local teachers and arts facilitators. The programme facilitates an environment where teachers and arts facilitators share the successes and discuss the failures of teaching arts without a formal framework.
Wednesday 29th of May: Workshops for Secondary School students
The Wednesday programme offers a full day of workshops for 150 high school students from across Swaziland, exposing the children to ‘the language of the arts’, instilling confidence and inspiring creative self-expression.
Friday 31st of May: Open Day
The new Open Day will host approximately 700 students from across the country, opening up the Schools’ Festival to a larger number of students. Each professional facilitator will perform. In addition, there will be local participation with performances by school competition winners in Ummiso, Sibhaca and cheerleading. There will also be an exciting performance facilitated by Lusweti and fine arts activities led by Yebo! Artreach.
The Open Day is accessible to secondary schools around Swaziland. If you are interested in participating in The MTN BUSHFIRE Schools’ Festival Open Day please contact Zohra Benzerga, email: firstname.lastname@example.org; telephone: 2528 2040.
Ellis Pearson is a painter, sculptor, theatre-maker, director, actor, magician, juggler, mime, musician, and teacher of creativity. Combining inventiveness, and a crazy sense of humour, he creates works that appeals to audiences anywhere in the world.
Created and performed by a father-daughter team, Catch the Rain makes the subject of water come alive in an innovative way.
Gcina Mhlophe is a well-known South African freedom fighter, activist, actor, storyteller, poet, playwright, director and author. Storytelling is a deeply traditional activity in Africa and Mhlophe is one of the few woman storytellers in a country dominated by males. Her charismatic performances work to preserve storytelling as a means of keeping history alive and encouraging South African children to read.
A citizen of the world,Pedro the Music Man moved to South Africa at nineteen to make a living as a professional musician. He established the African music programme at the University of Cape Town and has run extensive teacher-training programs for education authorities across Southern Africa.
A poet, dramatist, children’s theatre specialist, and director, Bonisile (Blacknote) Nxumalo currently teaches speech and drama at Sydney Williams Primary School (Swaziland). She writes and performs poetry for private and corporate functions in Swaziland. With emotive performances she explores love, injustice, child-birth, violence, endurance, dreams and hope while maintaining the drive to entertain.
Bushfire School Festival
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Official Photographers - Bram Lanmers and Sydelle Willow-Smith