Talent Africa to be held in Bay

Dancers, from left, Jean Pierre Cloete, Leanka Laubscher and Anneke Bushby Picture: FREDLIN ADRIAAN

For the first time since it was established some 11 years ago, the highly contested Talent Africa National Championships will be held in Port Elizabeth.

The talent search competition will take place at DF Malherbe High School in Walmer from Wednesday to next Saturday.

Besides drawing entrants from the Bay and all the way up to Cape Town (including smaller towns in the region), competitors who missed the Johannesburg leg of the national competition are also likely to descend on the Bay for a chance to be chosen for the national team which will go on to compete overseas.

Talent Africa was established with the objective to create South Africa’s most prestigious national talent competition yet.

The main aim is to give talented performers opportunities to be exposed to all the entertainment world can offer them, both nationally and internationally.

Marketing manager Shawn Ashcroft whose wife, Melanie, is the director of Talent Africa, said when the competition began 11 years ago, it only had 16 entrants who travelled to the US for Talent America – “and five came back with gold medals”.

“Talent Africa shapes each and every young performer who shows talent into a world-class entertainer,” he said.

This is done through national competitions, workshops, pageants and international exposure to some of the most prestigious events the world has to offer, including the Talent America competition in New York.”

He said this year’s Talent Africa had two legs – one which was held at the beginning of the year in Johannesburg and the second one now coming up in Port Elizabeth.

The team representing the country at Talent America later this year will be made up of gold medalists chosen from both legs of the competition.

Ashcroft said the Talent Africa covered all styles of performance including visual arts, instrumental, drama, poetry, dance and modelling.

So far the Port Elizabeth leg of the nationals would see some 640 items performed across all categories.

Dance teacher and owner of Leanka Laubscher School of Dance, Leanka Laubscher, said she was excited the competition was coming to the Bay as it meant she and her young students would not have to travel all the way to Johannesburg or Cape Town to take part in the nationals.

“This is the first time we are competing in Talent Africa and we’re excited. Maybe we’ll even get a chance to go overseas and compete as part of the national team,” Laubscher said.

For more information on how to enter for the Port Elizabeth leg of the talent search competition, go to www.talentafrica.biz.

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