Generosity keeps the Naledi Awards going
SOUTH AFRICA: Dawn and Des Lindberg established the Naledi Theatre Awards to recognise ‘excellence in the performing arts’. In its 13th year, the 2017 edition of the awards ceremony was staged at the Lyric Theatre in Johannesburg with fees waived from many of the technical suppliers as coordinated by DWR Distribution.
Sponsorship and finances had dwindled over recent years, so much so that the Lindbergs had struggled to put on last year’s edition. To ensure the Naledi Awards continued this year, DWR director Duncan Riley contacted Dream Sets, MJ Event Gear and MGG Productions, the rental companies that had provided their services for the awards in the past, asking them for help. He then approached Joshua Cutts from Visual Frontier to provide the lighting design, which he delivered at no cost. Finally, Mr Riley got in touch with the manufacturers that DWR represents in South Africa for any donations, with Green Hippo, Le Maitre, MA Lighting, MDG, Robe, Prolyte, Philips Entertainment and VuePix all chipping in.
‘I think we had to give something back and if we didn’t all get involved, the Naledi’s may not have happened,’ commented Mr Riley. ‘There would be no lighting designer, no lights on stage and so on. Joshua Cutts was very supportive of this project and he also brought in colleague Andre Siebrits and some of his crew. The companies who got involved were big-hearted and jumped on the bandwagon straight away. We received an amazing response and I am very grateful.’
Kevin Stannett and JP De Vernon of DWR set up the equipment for the event, which included a lighting rig of 12 Robe Squares, 12 BMFL Spots, eight Robe Spikies, four Philips Vari-Lite VL4000 BeamWash luminaires, 24 Robe ColorWash 700 and 12 MAC Quantum Profiles. Control was via an MA Lighting grandMA2 light and VPU at FOH and an NU on stage.
‘As we don’t yet have a headline sponsor and only scant funding from the Department of Arts and Culture, and being a non-profit company, the Naledi Awards is constantly battling to sustain itself and grow,’ stated Dawn Lindberg. ‘Our special thanks of course, go to Duncan of DWR, who initiated this gentle form of “crowd funding” and we hope to take it further next year. Thank you so much for your generous contribution to the sponsorships for the 2017 Naledi Theatre Awards. By all accounts this was the best Naledi ever and your donations helped us enormously!’