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Mzansi Fela festival a hit despite sacking of deputy artistic director | Pretoria News – Independent Online

Mamela Nyamza. Picture: Thobile Mathonsi/ANA
Pretoria – Despite the recent backlash against the South African State Theatre following the sacking of its deputy artistic director, Mamela Nyamza, the annual Mzansi Fela festival opened with hype on Sunday.

Singer and songwriter Zonke Dikana performed in a sold-out 1300-seater theatre, while other productions like Kwanele drew large audiences at the Arena Theatre.

“In essence, Nyamza’s dismissal did not have any impact on the opening of the Mzansi Fela Festival,” chief executive Sibongiseni Mkhize said yesterday.

The acclaimed dancer and choreographer’s dismissal left the industry shocked last week and was followed by backlash from the public and artists.

Nyamza had been appointed in November last year. Her key role was to provide support to the artistic director creatively and administratively, work closely with the Education Youth Children Theatre department which focuses on the development of young artists in the industry, initiate development programmes to support the main programme, and ensure integration of the overall artistic programme.

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