NEWS Makana Local Municipality One of the local municipalities within the Sarah Baartman District Municipality is Makana. Located in the Eastern Cape approximately 120 km from Port Elizabeth in the west, and about 180 km
PICTURE BY MARK WESSELS
Makhanda National Arts Festival
in the east, it is strategically placed in the province’s largest industrial centres. Makana is named after the legendary Xhosa prophet and war doctor Makana. It was during the frontier war between the Xhosa and the British that the Xhosa and the Khoi, who were the indigenous inhabitants of the area, formed alliances to resist the British occupation. The seat of government of the Makana Local Municipality is Makhanda (formerly Grahamstown). The city lies at
A scene from one of the plays at Makhanda National Arts Festival
the meeting point of four major biomes.
Makhanda National Arts Festival, with
It is therefore not unusual to experience
its 180-year old history, generates
a rainy morning and a balmy afternoon
interest nationally and internationally,
on the same day.
and has become the showpiece event
This city is of great historical and cultural importance and was once the second largest city in the Cape after
on the South African arts and culture calendar. The Festival not only generates
Cape Town. In view of the plethora of
interest but also much needed
churches and a cathedral, the town
revenue as the excitement and
has assumed the mantle of the “City of
vibrancy of the Festival causes the
Saints”. This former frontier town has
population of the City to double
grown to become one of the leading
during the duration of the Festival. It
cultural, educational and tourist centres
is estimated that the festival attracts
in South Africa.
some 50 000 festival-goers to the
Makhanda prepares for the Festival
event. For the first time last year the
Preparations for the Makhanda
festival was completely on-line due to
National Arts Festival, held over 11 days
the Coronavirus restrictions.
in June, are already in full swing. The
The organisers for this year’s Festival
are planning for a hybrid event in July. The live 2021 festival is likely to be smaller but more intimate and focused to ensure that both audiences and artists enjoy good value for money. Makhanda is anticipating that the Festival will go ahead as planned and that the uncertainty caused by the Coronavirus will dissipate by the time the Festival kicks off in July.
The Makhanda National Arts Festival, with its 180year old history, generates interest nationally and internationally...