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Eat your art out

Around 15 000 people are expected to attend the 15th annual Obs Arts Festival from Friday 9th to Sunday 11th December. It all takes place at the Observatory Village Green and surrounding roads and venues in Observatory, Cape Town. The festival first began when local musicians got together 15 years ago to raise funds for the suburb's library. It has now grown into a memorable showcase Capetonians look forward to every year.
But it hasn't been easy. The 2009 event experienced some security issues while the 2010 event saw one organiser pull out at the last minute. Justin Ashley, festival director and Observatory Improvement District Chairman, explains that the planning to create a smooth event this time around began at the start of the year. "We put a festival committee together and contracted professional people - music promoters, caterers - and got sponsorships too," he says.

Lee-Ann Sasman, public relations officer of the Observatory Village of Arts, explains that the purpose of the festival is to promote and develop a diverse profile of local art and culture. "Any profits made by the festival are used to pay the artists and the rest are re-invested in projects to further develop the arts as a means for social change," she says.

The programme for the weekend features almost two dozen musicians, among them aKING, Hot Water, Tidal Waves, Gazelle and other celebrated bands. But it won't just be music. "This year's festival also includes street performers, visual arts, and spoken word," Sasman points out. "The visual arts component will include open days at art studios in the area, shop window galleries, and an interactive graffiti mural."

The performances begin at 6pm on Friday, 11am on Saturday, and 11am on Sunday. Entrance is R50 for Friday, R70 for Saturday, and R20 for Sunday but a R90 Weekend Pass gives you full access to all three days. Tickets are available from the Obz Kwik Spar (Station Road, Observatory), Cape Town Tourism (Burg Street, CBD), and online at Web Tickets. For more information, please visit http://obsarts.org.za/.

About Eugene Yiga

Eugene graduated from the University of Cape Town with distinctions in financial accounting and classical piano. He then spent over two-and-half years working in branding and communications at two of South Africa's top market research companies. Eugene also spent over three-and-a-half years at an eLearning start-up, all while building his business as an award-winning writer. Visit www.eugeneyiga.com, follow @eugeneyiga on Twitter, or email moc.agiyenegue@olleh to say, um, hello.
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