An event that has a more than 100-year-old history in Cape Town got a new lease on life when the launch of the Cape Town Street Parade was announced at the Cape Town City Hall on Tuesday October 31.
The iconic event, previously known as the Tweede Nuwe Jaar Minstrel Parade, traditionally takes place on the second of January every year.
Organisers say the new event seeks to make the event sustainable, attract newcomers but still retain old “klopse”.
Director of the Kaapse Klopse Karnival Association, Muneeb Gambeno, said the rebranding of the parade was about making it more inclusive. “The rebranding is not about excluding. It’s meant to include more South Africans. This carnival is for all of us.”
He said one of the most important things about the rebranding was ensuring the longevity by encouraging everyone to become involved. Mr Gambeno said he hoped the rebranding would spark a conversation about the event among different communities.
He emphasised that there would be engagement with the Bo-Kaap Ratepayers’ and Civic Association about how the event can benefit the area. “It will always belong to the people of the city,” he said.
He said that the 2018 Cape Town Street Parade would consolidate relationships with the City, the Province and other existing stakeholders to ensure the growth of the event.
Mayco member for safety and security; and social services, JP Smith, said the City would do everything to ensure the event was a success. “We are delighted with Muneeb’s approach.”
Mr Smith added that corporate sponsorship was vital to secure as government funding was not sustainable in the long-term. Citing the Rio Carnival as an example, he also said the event had the potential to create thousands of permanent jobs. He said the total funding for the event comes to just over
R6 million. “That’s the single largest allocation for the city for any event. It is about making sure we add as much value to this street parade as we can.
“To truly celebrate the 110-year old history of the minstrels it means exposing people across the city to that heritage. The history and tradition is incredibly important but at the same time you have to be continuously innovative.”
He said he wanted the event to become something that people travel to Cape Town to experience.