Applications invited for 2020 National Arts Festival

Applications invited for 2020 National Arts Festival

Organization: National Arts Festival

Event Duration: 25 Jun. 2020 - 05 Jul. 2020

Apply By: 19 Aug 2019

About the Organization

The National Arts Festival is an important event on the South African cultural calendar, and the biggest annual celebration of the arts on the African continent. Starting at the end of June/beginning of July, it runs for 11 days and is held in the small university city of Makhanda (formerly Grahamstown), which is situated in the Eastern Cape, 130km from Port Elizabeth.

About the event

The Main Programme of the Festival is a platform for works by well-known or established South African or international artists. It has two streams: the Curated Programme and the Festival Choice. The Curated Programme comprises works selected by our Curatorial Committee, and spans all genres and types of work, with an emphasis on those that are more cutting-edge and provocative. The Curators will consider all the submissions received, engage with artists and producers, and develop a coherent Curated Programme for presentation at the Festival. This Committee and the Festival Executive Producer also present a selection of works  that are more mainstream as the Festival Choice.

Invitation: Local and international artists and presenters interested in having their work considered for the Main Programme of the 2020 National Arts Festival are invited to register expressions of interest online

Date and Venue: The 2020 National Arts Festival will take place in Makhanda (formerly Grahamstown) from 25 June to 5 July.

Deadline: The deadline for submissions is 19th August 2019

Requirements: Our team looks for the following in assessing proposals of works to include in our Programme.

  • Premieres of New Work: Premieres of new productions, exhibitions and concerts by well-known or established South African or international artists.
  • Cutting-Edge Work: Boundary-pushing productions, exhibitions, new music and digital arts interventions that can generate an active dialogue both in terms of form and content.
  • Strong Works That Have Already Had a Season: Productions, exhibitions and concerts – whether cutting-edge or mainstream – that have already been presented in South Africa or abroad.
  • Collaborations/Co-Productions: Proposals for collaborations with South African and non-South African artists and managements and / or festivals to co-produce work that may require more than one partner for the effective funding of productions with the proviso that such productions have strong artistic merit.
  • Multi-Disciplinary Presentations: The Festival recognises that an increasing number of South African artists are creating work that interfaces across genres and also with different forms of media and welcomes such proposals that reflect changing trends in arts practice.
  • Diversity: The Festival presents work that reflects the broad demographic of South African arts practice.
  • Public Space Work: Works that activate public spaces in all genres


Budget contributions are up to a maximum of R 250,000. It is rare and unlikely that the Festival will cover the entire cost of a work, and so we encourage co-productions and applications that have committed funding from other sources. The final budget contribution will be determined solely at the discretion of the National Arts Festival.

How to Apply

For more information please check the Link


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