MUSIC pupils from the Eastern Cape will show off their talents when the annual SA Society of Music Teachers (SASMT) of Port Elizabeth music competition kicks off this weekend at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University's South Campus.
The competition will be held on Friday August 30 and Saturday August 31. SASMT Port Elizabeth committee member Nicky Bosman said the competition presents a unique opportunity for music pupils to compete against each other.
"There are many [music] eisteddfods that are held in the Eastern Cape and while the competitors are recognised in these, they only receive medals when they win. In this competition, there is recognition from their peers and they actually stand a chance to win some exciting prizes," she said.
"We have also found that this competition is good for the students as they compete with others in their categories and this prepares them for their final exams where they have to play in front of a panel of adjudicators."
The prizes for the categories include a R10000 voucher from Lee Gold Music, a R3500 cash prize from the PE Music Society and bursaries from NMMU worth R15000 for category winners.
During the two-day competition, the budding musicians will compete in the soloist and ensemble categories – which has been divided into western classical and ethnic music.
For the first time in the 13-year history of the competition, an additional category for tertiary students between the ages of 19 and 21 has also been included.
"The competition has grown over the years because it is a niche competition in the Eastern Cape. We're looking at children in primary schools who play music at the age of about 12 or 13. There will also be tertiary students there. There are different categories and for example in the ethnic ensemble category, you will see a marimba band. Then in the soloist category you will see some of the children playing a flute or the piano," Bosman said.
The first round of the competition starts at 3.30pm on Friday where the ensembles, primary school pupils and tertiary students will be performing in their respective categories. The next day, the high school soloists will perform from 8.30am onwards.
The finalists' concert will take place the same evening at 7pm. Entrance to the first round of competition is free, but a R10 fee will be charged for the evening concert.
- Further information from Nicky Bosman, (041) 504-4235