Four scholarships finalists and two BASA Nominations for SAMRO Foundation


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SAMRO Overseas Scholarships Competition Jazz Finalists
SAMRO Overseas Scholarships Competition Jazz Finalists

Thursday was SAMRO Foundation’s day of winning big for music and the arts. Not only did four young musicians make it to the SAMRO Overseas Scholarships finals, the Concerts SA programme, supported by the Royal Norwegian Embassy and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was nominated for two Business and Arts South Africa (BASA) Awards.

Concerts SA, a joint project by the SAMRO Foundation and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs represented by the Royal Norwegian Embassy in SA, was nominated in two categories:

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• Increasing Access to the Arts Award
• Beyond Borders Partnership Award

SAMRO Foundation Overseas Scholarships Competition Western Art Music Finalists
SAMRO Foundation Overseas Scholarships Competition Western Art Music Finalists

According to the BASA website, “The 19th Annual BASA Awards, partnered by Hollard & Business Day, revealed a diverse array of partnerships, with strong contention in all 11 categories that were open for entry in this year’s awards.

“Particularly noteworthy this year are the finalists in the Beyond Borders Partnership Award, which recognises global-level partnerships that build brand reputation and audience for both the business and arts organisations across international borders, showcasing South Africa to Africa and the rest of the world and bringing international arts projects to South Africa.

“In this category, SAMRO and the Royal Norwegian Embassy’s partnership with Concerts SA is in the running, along with ABSA’s partnership with the Barclays L’Atelier, Lanxess (Pty) Ltd’s partnership with Music is a Great Investment (MIAGI), and Spier Wine Farm’s Spier dancing in other words Poetry Festival.”

On Saturday 20 August 2016, when the SAMRO Overseas Scholarships finalists light up the stage, more than R600 000 worth of prizes are up for grabs.

Following Thursday’s nail-biting semi-final round of the SAMRO competition, which this year focuses on young instrumentalists, four exceptional musicians have been selected to compete.

They are: Benjamin Jephta (bass) and Linda Sekhakhane (saxophone); and Sally Minter (flute) and Dylan Tabisher (marimba).

These four finalists will be performing their own choice of repertoire on Saturday evening in front of a public audience and a high-powered panel of adjudicators at Johannesburg’s Linder Auditorium. They will also premiere new works by South African composers Prince Bulo, Matthijs van Dijk, Claire Loveday and Bongani Ndodana-Breen, commissioned by the SAMRO Foundation specifically for this competition.

The Jazz finalists will be accompanied by a jazz trio comprising Melvin Peters (piano), Victor Masondo (bass) and Rob Watson (drums), and the Western Art music finalists will be accompanied by pianist Elna van der Merwe.

Last year’s SAMRO scholarships winner, singer Zoë Modiga, who came to national prominence this year when she reached the top eight of DStv’s The Voice singing contest, will also perform during Saturday’s gala event. She will sing her own arrangements of Yakhal’ Inkomo by Winston Mankunku and Four Women by Nina Simone.

Apart from the competition, there will be exhibitions in the foyer of the Linder Auditorium, including an appetizer to September Jive!, a vinyl and portraiture exhibition by Alliance Française. September Jive is a tribute to the musical heritage of South Africa and comprises two exhibitions as well as panel discussions, screenings, meetings and talks. It aims at promoting the South African musical heritage, from a musicological, historical and visual perspective.

Concerts SA’s very own DJ Nacheit will be providing a vinyl-only set of South African jazz from the 1960s to the present.

Tickets are still available for the finals of the SAMRO Overseas Scholarships Competition at Johannesburg’s Linder Auditorium on Saturday, 20 August 2016. Visit webtickets to book.

Visit for more information on the SAMRO Foundation’s programmes and projects, or follow #SAMROScholarships, or @SAMROFoundation on Twitter and Facebook.

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