The Johannesburg Arts Alive International Festival (JAAIF) has announced yesterday that it has included new features for its 22nd anniversary.
One of the latest additions under the JAAIF banner is the Showbiz, Entertainment & Arts Expo (SEAexpo) which will be happening for the first time. The SEAexpo brings together arts practitioners, creative industry leaders and business mavericks to connect under one roof for sustainable growth.
The two day exhibition and conference takes place on 9th & 10th September at the Sci Bono Discovery Centre in Newtown.
The South African creative industry is unique and broad covering as many disciplines from music, film, theatre, broadcasting to photography and crafts.
It is known for its history of instability and hardship, while maintaining a reputable position internationally. The SEAexpo certainly has their work cut out for them and the organisers are well aware of the challenges.
“SEAexpo aims to cater to all the different facets that make up the whole creative sector. It is the first of its kind for South Africa,” said the SEAexpo marketing manager, Thabo Maleka.
“The uniqueness of the event comes with its challenges, but we’re excited to be at the fore-front of bringing inter- related creative industries together.”
“We are very happy to gather industry professionals and creative minds to spark game changing ideas that will see the South African creative industry thriving economically,” Maleka said.
Exhibitors in the expo include Vuyani Dance Theatre, Adobe Creative Cloud; Market Theatre Foundation; Blackfuse Communications and Contento.
Running concurrently with the expo is a two day conference with the theme ‘creative industries’ role on the economic stage’ The two days of the conference will be split into two sub themes that speak to the main one.
Day 1 looks at the ‘role’ the creative industry needs to play in the economy and the discussion will try and define the role for each of the different sectors making up the creative industry. Day 2 focusses on ‘performance’ and how the roles can be put into practice.
Engaging the above mentioned issues are strong and diverse speakers including Proudly SA CEO, Advocate Leslie Sedibe; legendary and internationally acclaimed playwright, choreographer and arts practitioner, Welcome Msomi; playwright, performer and head of Arts and Culture at the University of Johannesburg, Ashraf Johaardien, Deputy Minister of Small Business Development, Elizabeth Thabethe and MD of Microsoft South Africa, Mteto Nyathi, among others.
With previous top positions at music and film organizations, Sedibe is an advocate with plenty insight on how the creative industry works and he will share what he knows.
Msomi has contributed greatly to the rich history of the South African arts as the founder and director of Izulu Dance Theatre and Music established in 1965. His Zulu adaptation of Shakeapeare’s Macbeth, Umabatha is considered the only cultural classic to come from South Africa.
He continues to lend his artistic hand to some of the country’s prestigious events. He’s the right person to speak on how to remain relevant and to adapt to new audiences.
Johaardien has a reputation for achieving exceptional results in senior management and leaderships roles in key SA cultural organizations and educational institutions. This is on top of being a prolific playwright and performer as well. He will speak on art and its role as a business.
Mteto Nyati who has been at the helm of Microsoft for six years was instrumental in the establishment of Microsoft’s 4Afrika Initiative which aims to improve the continent’s global competitiveness through its economic development. He speaks on the changing world of technology and how the arts can transform itself through technology and innovation.
It is invigorating talks that will hopefully empower the creative industry and mobilize it for the better.
Proceedings of the event start at 9am and end at 8pm. Entrance is free for all visitors who pre-register online at www.seaexpoafrica.com/visitors. For all those who do not pre-register, entrance fee is as follows:
- Adults R50; Students R30 (student card is required); Pensioners R30 and Children under 12 get in for free.