CAPE Town took the lion’s share of this year’s Standard Bank Young Artist Awards, winning four out of seven categories at the ceremony in Johannesburg last night.
Kyle Shepherd won the jazz category, Nicola Elliott won dance and Jahmil Qubeka won in film. Hasan and Husain Essop received the award in the visual art category.
The other winners were Johannesburg artists Donna Kukama and Greg Homann who won the art performance and theatre categories respectively. London-based Njabulo Madlala won the music category.
Shepherd, 26, said he had been a jazz artist since the age of 15 and had performed at concerts across the world.
“I’m very happy to have received such a prestigious award. This is my first big award,” he said.
Aspiring jazz artists should be prepared to work hard if they wanted to be successful. “Being a solo jazz artist is not all glamour. It takes lots of hard work,” said Shepherd.
This weekend he would embark on a three-week tour of Malaysia, India and Japan.
“The award is a certificate as well as money,” said Shepherd.
“I’m completely delighted. It is an incredible honour to receive the award and I’m just thrilled,” Elliott said last night.
Her work as dance choreographer had been staged at the Grahamstown Arts Festival, she said.
The awards, established in 1984, form part of the National Arts Festival programme and are also given in recognition of established young South African artists exceptional in their fields but who have not yet achieved national exposure, according to the awards’ website. A National Arts Festival committee selects winners in five disciplines, comprising theatre, music, dance, jazz and the visual arts and, from time to time, film.