Sunday, 20 July 2014

Buskaid Soweto String Ensemble in Trafalgar Square


On the way to the airport, the young musicians from Soweto stop in Trafalgar Square to play a set for Mandela's birthday, replacing the trashy human statues and beat-box buskers who are such an affront to the National Gallery.

They play, sing, dance and drum for Madiba, watched by groupies who've followed them on this week-long tour from a private drawing room to the Queen Elizabeth Hall.



Other people stop, enthralled. They haven't got a clue what's going on. They probably think they are seeing some precocious students from Lewisham, not dedicated musicians from Soweto who need a bigger audience and a leap in sponsorship if the life-changing vision is not to end in rubble.

After the performance I give an interview in French to a reporter called Geneviève from BBC Afrique. I probably end up on the cutting-room-floor, who knows.





Buskaid is Rosemary Nalden's raison d'être. Redefine Properties and the National Arts Council of South Africa backed the tour. https://www.buskaid.org.za/

More pictures if you scroll down.

PS there are eight pillars in front of the National Gallery, not seven. I offer a choice.






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