The Artscape Theatre Centre hosted a thanksgiving concert on Sunday November 28 to show appreciation to those who have supported the institution throughout the pandemic, as well as over the past 50 years.
The concert kicked-off with the unveiling of a plaque to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the building that houses Artscape.
In a statement, the Artscape team said they had remained grateful to those who have supported the cultural institution throughout the trying times brought about by the global Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown regulations.
“As the pandemic hit the country last year March, Artscape needed to assure all stakeholders that we would continuously implement and adhere to the directives from the South African government to ensure the well-being and safety of all our employees, producers and artists who depend on our stages as their main source of income.”
The Artscape needed to constitute a team to research the best ways in which to approach the “new normal” in order to keep the arts alive – primarily online – during the difficult first few months.
Throughout the past 22 months, the institution has managed to keep the stage curtains open, surviving all phases of lockdown regulations.
The Artscape Associated Arts companies housed in the building as well as those who are based externally, were able to stage productions with the commencement of very limited patron numbers, and, in this way, kept the theatre alive.
With the regulations of lockdown levels easing, patrons were slowly trickling back to the theatre.
Artscape CEO Marlene le Roux said said she wanted to thank the Western Cape provincial government, who assisted with the maintenance of the building; the national Department of Sport, Arts and Culture who assisted with funds to run the complex; and the City of Cape Town, who funded local artists as well as the Western Cape provincial government Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport, who assisted with much-needed funding.
“Together all of the above mentioned role-players, including sponsors and most importantly the patrons, offered their respective lifelines to ’hold our hands’ during these difficult times.“
The thanksgiving concert was held in collaboration with the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra and the Associated Arts Companies at Artscape.
A plaque to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the building that houses Artscape, was unveiled by Western Cape Premier Alan Winde, Cultural Affairs and Sport MEC Anroux Marais, the Artscape Council chairperson Rajesh Jock and Ms Le Roux.
“This concert is just to say ‘thank you” to all. The name of the concert encapsulates our feelings towards especially all our partners and friends. Equally at Artscape, we gratefully have 50 years of being a home for the arts. We remain mindful of all the history and elements of us reaching this milestone. Equally we want to say ‘thank you’ to all those who came before us and to all of those who currently ensure our success,” said Ms Le Roux.
The concert will be available on the Artscape YouTube channel in late December for the public to view – a date is yet to be finalised.
Visit www.artscape.co.za for more information on Artscape Theatre and the participating organisations.