APPEAL TO SAVE THE HILTON ARTS FESTIVAL
For close on 30 years the Hilton Arts Festival has made an indelible print on the South African and KZN theatre, music and arts landscape. Every year, like magic, it happens again, bringing joy to thousands of people. Thanks to Covid, the true image is no longer as rosy.
According to Sue Clarence, founder and festival director since 1993, 2020 was not only a financial disaster for the entertainment and eventing industries world-wide, but also for the Hilton Arts Festival.
She says that this iconic annual event – which is due to take place between 17 to 19 September this year, Covid permitting – is now under threat if sufficient funds cannot be raised.
“The donations will be used to make this year happen (and next, depending on quantum). Our problem lies in the fact that companies that gave us HUGE support in kind – for example, staging, lighting and sound gear / tent infrastructure/ car hire – can no longer do so as they are too financially compromised. This means that we have to pay for these essential items rather than having them donated. We need to pay to create the infrastructure, in essence,” she explains.
She adds that Hilton College has been a loyal and supportive host and sponsor, graciously allowing the festival to use its property and buildings.
“It is incorrect to presume that the College either contributes to or benefits from the Festival in any financial sense. The festival is managed by ATSA, a non-profitable trust with charitable status, which aims annually, to cover all costs (including the less glamorous aspects of event management), provide work for performers, artists and technicians; to give the public an immersive arts experience; and, to expose the youth of South Africa to the arts and all the intrinsic values of arts in education. Even in a good year, the Festival is not a money spinner.”
Sue says that, in order to make 2021 and 2022 (the 30th Festival) a reality, he would be most grateful if patrons, lovers of the arts and those who simply want to keep the culture of the province alive for future generations could make a small donation.
“No matter how big or small, it will help keep this event afloat until there is light at the end of the Covid tunnel. Without your help, we at the Hilton Arts Festival face extinction,” she says.
Those wishing to reach out, should remember the following: https://www.backabuddy.co.za/champion/project/hilton-festival and And #Hope4HiltonFest