Despite load shedding, National Arts Festival must go on: Organisers

The CEO of the festival said they've made contingency plans to ensure that load shedding does not ruin the event.

FILE: Festival goers enjoy a performance at the National Arts Festival in Makhanda. Picture: @artsfestival/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Despite rolling power cuts, the organisers of the annual National Arts Festival said the show must go in Makhanda.

The CEO of the festival said they've made contingency plans to ensure that load shedding does not ruin the event.

It's an event where artists showcase their talent on one of South Africa's biggest stages.

After a virtual National Arts Festival due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021, festival organisers refused to allow power outages to impact the festival.

The hard lockdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic and now load shedding have posed a huge threat to their industry.

This comes as stages, where artists perform, need lighting and reliable electricity throughout the 11-day event.

CEO Monica Newton said they were finding ways to work around the disruptions.

"Sometimes we are able - with generators and backup lightning - to light the stage. The show must stand, if we can shift it to another venue we will."

Newton has also heaped praise on the audience for their patience during these difficult times.

She hoped that the festival would end on a high on 3 July.