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Wednesday, 30 May 2012 11:18

Grassroots jam for Sakhuluntu

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Elna Schütz: Drums, dancers and songbirds came out last Friday to jam at “Grassroots”, an event held in aid of the Sakhuluntu Cultural Group.

To mark the end of a long term, several Rhodes societies contributed with what they’re best at: creating a relaxed and fun afternoon in the Botanical Gardens. A variety of local performers kept the crowd entertained with music and poetry, but Sakhuluntu’s dance routines were the definite highlight. The kids from the cultural group, from Extension 9 in Joza, put on quite the show, dancing to various well known songs as well as doing a gumboot dance.


The event grew out of the collaboration between Sakhuluntu and the Society of Music, Art and Drama Education (MADE), and aims to showcase local talent and raise funds. Various other societies – including Live Music Society, gardening society Common Ground and African Drum Soc – pitched in by setting up the gig and selling food. Chris Harris from Common Ground remarked that the event had a “fun vibe” and “a good student turn out”.

The crowd was full of students and Sakhuluntu friends relaxing and enjoying the performances. “It was inspiring to see the kids put so much effort into something they enjoy,” said first-year Sean Devonport, one of the spectators.

Chairperson of MADE, Jack Kaminski says the idea has been in the works for a while. He adds that it aims towards funding materials for Sakhuluntu as well as MADE’s workshops. Sakhuluntu’s organiser, Vuyo Booi, applauded the event because it helped bring together creative souls from very different environments. “This is what I call the United Nations of Grahamstown,” Booi joked. Seeing as the name ‘Sakhuluntu’ means ‘to build the humanity’, this event seemed to fit right in.

Kaminski hopes Grassroots will turn into an annual chance for “societies to collaborate and enjoy an afternoon of fun, entertainment and hot food and beverages,” all the while helping the group. “Sakhuluntu is a heritage that must go on,” Booi says. Hopefully these kinds of collaborations work towards exactly that.

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