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Third annual Nama Festival expected to be a bigger affair

Keletso Thobega



Proud: The Nama celebrate their history and culture

The third annual Nama Festival will be held in Lokgwabe, Kgalagadi North on 31 August and 1 September 2018. This year’s instalment will be held under the theme, Cultural inheritance: gateway to Identity.

The festival, hosted by the Nama Development Trust, celebrates the culture and language of the Nama. It has grown in leaps and bounds over years, and has managed to bring together the Nama from Botswana, Namibia and South Africa. The Nama, sometimes referred to as Namaqua, are an ethnic group from Southern Africa and the largest group of the Khoi-Khoi.

Part of the events on the line-up for the event include Namastap and other traditional dances and performances, horse parade, Nama language and promotion and an excursion to Kaptein Simon Kooper National Monument.

In the past then former president Mokgweetsi Masisi and historian Jeff Ramsey have graced the event. The festival has also attracted the German Embassy, National Museum, European Union, The Sol Plaatjie Institute in South Africa and the University of Botswana San Research Centre.

Ramsay is expected to make an appearance again this year, and will present on the Nama Kaptein Simon Kooper. The festival co-director Nichodimas Cooper previously told Vibe that they still celebrate Kooper because he is considered a hero among the Nama.

“When the Nama were attacked by the Germans, he managed to retreat and protect other people,” he said. The Nama and Herero people were amongst the ethnic African communities who fought against racial extermination and punishment meted on them by the Germans in then German South West Africa (Namibia) between 1904 and 1907. Approximately 10, 000 Nama people died during those wars.
*For updates visit Facebook Page: Annual Nama Cultural Festival – Botswana.

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BOSJE elevates jazz education in Botswana



CHANGING LIVES: Music has the power to empower youth.

The Botswana Society of Jazz Education (BOSJE) will host the 9th annual International Jazz Day for the 3rd time this year at the Maitisong theatre. According to the founding chairperson Akhutlheng Mogami, the society was formed to create a platform for jazz musicians and aspiring jazz musicians to grow and share ideas and even have their work documented.

“As a society, we have realized a need for jazz education. There is also no documentation about jazz in Botswana, which makes it difficult for both the teachers and students when it comes to teaching and learning about jazz as there is no local content to refer to. It is also for purposes of funding applications to run workshops and host festivals and exchange programs that we needed to have a legally registered nonprofit making entity as this one,” she said.

BOSJE was officially registered on the 31st of August 2015 with the registrar of societies and some its objectives include to ensure the growth of Jazz in Botswana and development of jazz education; to build jazz community by advancing education and research; to document, preserve and archive our Botswana jazz heritage; to promote skills development and performance through jazz camps, exchange programs and jazz shows and festivals, and to also develop new audiences.

In January 2017 the society formed a youth jazz big band (Big Bands). Mogami noted that they managed to bring together young people from all walks of life to teach them about jazz and how to play jazz. Since then, the band has been growing substantially both musically and professionally. She noted that The Big Bands in Botswana project which aims to put together jazz bands in schools and communities all over the country. “The project brings together young people and teaches them to play music in an ensemble set up.

The project commenced on the 15th of February 2019 with the primary objective of this project is to bring positive social change through music. Children who are involved in this music program receive a music education, which we believe will lead them to improved overall academic success. The children will also learn the essential skills needed for the 21st century workforce.

In addition to that, these children will also have a platform to exercise their creativity, and all this will in turn grow their confidence.” The band has graced the Masire foundation annual gala dinner, International Jazz Day, Annual De Beers sight holders Dinner, and Gaborone toastmasters among others.

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Diva Vebrok and Benson Phutego drop love sin gle

The MidweekSun Admin



NEW OFFERING: Benson & Diva Vebrok’s listening session rocked

Diva Vebrok and Benson Phutego recently released their joint single titled Ha o ka leba. The two launched the song at a listening session at Greenberry Gardens. Music artists including Nono, Franco and promoters PP and Gloria Dzwikiti as well as other industry role players flocked the venue to listen to what the two have to offer and they were not disappointed.

The single is good quality – from the melody, lyrics, rthyme and production. The divine diva Diva Vebrok adds a golden touch with her smooth voice while the bold and eloquent Phutego’s voice complements hers as he breaks out into poetry.

Director of ceremony at the listening session Berry Heart also kept the crowd galvanised throughout the night with her energetic spirit. President of Music Promotions Zenzele Hirschfield expressed appreciation for the support rendered to the two and highlighted that it is important for artists to support one another. “I am honoured to see that that many people in the local music industry have come out to support their fellow artists.

This means a lot and we really need to unite as artists all the time,” she said. She sang praises for Diva Vebrok who she said was passionate and hard working. “She is more than just an artist but also an influencer and entrepreneur. She is one of the women in the music industry who work hard and never give up on their craft,” she said.

Phutego impressed the crowd with his words of wisdom as he appreciated being featured by Ve brok on the single. “It was great working with her as she is passionate and hard working. Women are the pillars of society and as such they should be respected. I have no regrets about this project because I am confident that we produced a great love song.”

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