Swaziland
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NASTY C, KWESTA FOR 3-DAY EPIC GIG

MANZINI – It’s going to be an epic three days!

The first phase line-up of The Epic Gig was revealed during the its launch, which was held at The George Hotel on Friday. This year’s festival will be held at Mavuso Trade and Exhibition Center on June 30 - July 2. This  will be the fourth edition of the event. It will be a three-day event which is themed ‘Its ok to be different’.  Festival Director Tammy ‘Toxik’ Dlamini in his speech at the launch shared that a full festival event ticket will cost E450, while a single day ticket is priced at E200 and a VIP ticket will cost E1 200. Just like previous editions of the show, the line-up is made up of local, as well as South African musicians.

Local artists who were revealed as part of the first phase are, The Bishops, Eimsofly, Itsallblaq, DJ Fantacy, Ohpis, Sbu De Drum DJ, Shawprops, Thubillion, Kangaroo, as well as Urcousinphayo. SA musicians who were announced for the first phase are, Nasty C, A-Reece, Aymos, 25k, Kwesta, Mlindo The Vocalist, Thuli P, as well as YoungstaCPT. According to  Tammy, this was just the first phase of the artist drop, he went on to say that details pertaining to the announcement of the second phase would be announced soon.

Epic

Tammy narrated that their main aim was to target young artists as The Epic Gig show is mainly for the youth. “We now live in a society that doesn’t understand the youth. As Epic Gig we understand the youth, we realised that our youth is facing a problem of unemployment, as well as mental health. In fighting these problems we have incorporated several initiatives that will help empower the youth during the show. At Mavuso Trade and Exhibition Center we want to use the pavilions as film and television training exhibitions. We also plan to do youth rehabilitation where we will feature the Vulamasango Youth. We will also host a beauty and culture exhibition as well as small and medium enterprises exhibition where the youth will be able to register companies for free and get to pay the required fees once they start making money with their businesses. We are also planning to have Asikutulisane arts programme discussions as well as a youth seminar,” shared the festival director.

Eswatini National Council of Arts and Culture Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Stanley Dlamini echoed Tammy’s words and said as a council they appreciate the efforts made by The Epic Gig team in sustaining the youth. “We really appreciate the work and effort from The Epic Gig team,in sustaining the youth especially establishing the capacity building aspect. There are a lot of empowerment programmes attached to this festival. If a festival doesn’t unleash new upcoming artists, then we have a challenge. ‘‘We really appreciate that new artists are being featured as part of this festival and this eventually means that our industry is active. We are also excited that the team involves a lot of partners and associations. The council is currently in a drive to mainstream arts into the schools curriculum. The Epic Gig is one of the projects where the practicals for the expressive arts can be exhibited and demonstrated. Whatever we do in our spaces, the youth will always have a role to play during The Epic Gig festival,” Stanley said.

According to statistics which were displayed during the launch, the youth makes up 70 per cent of the audience during the show. According to Tammy  they are looking to grow the audience during this year’s event with the youth being the