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ARTS AND CULTURE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE
2 May 2007
DIMPHO DI KOPANE PRODUCTION HOUSE: BRIEFING; PANSALB BOARD APPOINTMENTS: DISCUSSION
Acting Chairperson: Ms P Tshwete (ANC)
Documents handed out
List of candidates for appointment to Pansalb Board to be interviewed 03 to 10 May 2007
Minutes of 27 March 2007 meeting
Programme for Pansalb interviews, 10h –15h45, 03 May 2007
Information about Dimpho Di Kopane Production House [available at www.ddk.org.za]
Audio Recording of the Meeting
The Committee discussed its strategy for interviewing candidates for appointment to the Pan South African Language Board at five special meetings to be held between 3 and 10 May 2007.
A presentation was made by Dimpho Di Kopane Production House. The Committee responded warmly to the delegation’s request for assistance and support, offered specific guidance and advice, and advised the delegation to submit a business plan to be forwarded, after deliberation by the Committee, to the Minister for Arts and Culture.
Strategy & criteria for interviewing candidates for appointment to Pansalb: Discussion
In view of the delayed arrival of the Dimpho Di Kopane Production House delegation, the Acting Chairperson proposed that the second agenda item, the discussion on strategy and criteria for interviewing candidates for appointment to the Pan South African Language Board (Pansalb), be taken first. The Committee agreed. The Acting Chairperson explained the format for the interviews and emphasised the importance of members’ consistent and regular attendance, particularly at the five meetings of the Committee that had been scheduled, on 3, 4, 8, 9 and 10 May 2007, expressly for the purpose of interviewing the 25 short-listed candidates.
Dimpho Di Kopane Production House: Briefing on Challenges
Ms Bylelwa Cosa (Head of Production and actor) said that Dimpho Di Kopane (DDK) Artistic Productions was a multicultural theatre, opera and film company that also created educational and cultural workshops as well as corporate shows; it embraced DDK Repertory Company, DDK Artistic Agency, and DDK Academy. DDK consisted of some 32 highly talented South African actors, dancers and singers. The name Dimpho Di Kopane meant “combined talents” in Sotho and described the Company’s modus operandi, whereby every company member’s unique skills and energy were focused collectively to perform work of the highest calibre.
The Company had achieved considerable international success including the Best Film award at the Berlin International Film Festival for their first feature film U-Carmen eKhayelitsha (2004). Their second film, Son of Man (2005), filmed in the Eastern Cape and Khayelitsha, won the Festival Award for Best Feature at the Pan African Film Festival in Los Angeles. Moreover, they had achieved five successful stage shows, including four that they had performed in New York - Carmen, Yiimimangaliso The Mysteries, Ibali looTsotsi The Beggar’s Opera and Ikumkanikazi yeKhephu The Snow Queen.
The Company, however, had suffered problems with management, and Company members were now seeking to relaunch Dimpho Di Kopane with a new structure and with the aim of being self-sustaining. DDK now had offices in Mowbray. Ms Cosa asked the Committee to help DDK in achieving its goals, thereby creating future work for other people. DDK was facing especial difficulties with finance, but had already created some jobs.
Mr Sandile Kamle (Artistic Director and Head of Training) added that he wanted to invite well-established directors to work with DDK.
The Acting Chairperson asked if DDK currently had a funder and how did members of DDK survive.
Ms Cosa replied that they had not yet found a funder.
Mr C Gololo (ANC) welcomed the delegation and asked about the U-Carmen eKhayelitsha production and its leading cast.
Mr Sandile Kamle (Artistic Director and Head of Training) explained that the actor concerned was no longer in the Company.
Mr M Sonto (ANC) recognised the dilemma that DDK had experienced under the directorship of someone who had depleted DDK. It was necessary to explore talent, and search for previously unknown talent.
The Acting Chairperson invited discussion on how organisations like DDK should proceed in order to be included on the list of entities eligible for support.
Ms D van der Walt (DA) said that the first step was to ask the National Arts Council to recognise DDK as an entity worthy of support. In applying for grants, it was important to demonstrate “a track record” of achievements. She suggested that the Committee approach the Minister on DDK’s behalf.
Mr H Maluleka (ANC) said that the first priority was to find access to financial resources and suggested sponsorship.
The Acting Chairperson concurred with Ms Van der Walt in that the National Arts Council was to be approached first of all.
Ms Cosa asked for clarification on the meaning of the term “entity” in the context of the Committee’s discussion.
Ms Van der Walt explained that “entities” were organisations like the National Library for the Blind that is eligible for funding by the government. She suggested attending all the festivals, like that at Grahamstown, and that DDK actively promoted itself in order to attract sponsorship.
The Acting Chairperson suggested an approach to the provincial arts council, and said that she would be willing also to approach the Minister directly.
Ms N Mbombo (ANC) advised the delegation that, when they sought funding, they would be asked specific questions and must to be able to explain and justify their requests item by item.
The Acting Chairperson referred to the importance of the Department of Arts and Culture in contributing to job creation, and emphasized that the delegation must prepare a business plan with a detailed profile of DDK to be presented to the Committee. Thereafter, after deliberation, the Committee would submit DDK’s business plan to the Minister.
Adoption of minutes
In conclusion, the Committee adopted, with corrections, the minutes of its 27 March 2007 meeting.
The meeting was adjourned.
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