Concerts SA’s Digital Mobility Fund Streams Hope to Musicians Once Again

Author: JT Comms
Date: 12 May 2021

For Immediate Release #DMF2021 Results Announced


We are proud to announce the results of the Concerts SA Digital Mobility Fund for the April 2021 callout. For the second year in a row, Concerts SA has awarded subsidies to music projects. A total of 62 grants of R30 000 each were awarded to projects across the country.  For a list of all successful applications, visit www.concertssa.co.za or www.iksafrica.com

The Concerts SA project is supported by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs through the Royal Norwegian Embassy, SAMRO, the SAMRO Foundation, and has also received support from the Swiss-based Levedo Foundation. This year the bulk of the funds for the Digital Mobility Fund came from the Presidential Employment Stimulus Package (PESP) administered by the National Arts Council.


As of the first lock-down in 2020, COVID-19 crippled the live music sector. As Concerts SA we immediately investigated possible ways to stimulate recovery,” said IKS Director Andre le Roux. “We immediately researched digital alternatives to live events which resulted in Digital Futures – Live Streaming in South Africa. This not only provided insight into live streaming music events in South Africa, but to the best available alternative for a failing sector. From this research, the first Digital Mobility Fund was born.”


A total of 401 high quality applications were received, up from last year’s 130. Applicants hailed from all parts of South Africa and formed a rich kaleidoscope of cultures, traditions, genres, gender, idioms, and origins.

One of last year's recipients of DMF2020, Davina Satori, stated: ‘Let me start by saying that never in my wildest dreams did I expect to be a recipient of the Digital Mobility Fund. I did not think that my music is what people associate with South African music, so in that vein I thought I would fall by the wayside. I was pleasantly surprised, in fact over the moon when I received an email notifying me of my good fortune.


Since 2013 Concerts SA has supported music touring across the southern African region. In the heart of the pandemic in 2020 and once again this year, with the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic necessitating a lockdown of live music and activities, the impact on musicians’ ability to earn an income has been devastating. For details on the impact on the livelihoods of artists, Concerts SA and IKSAfrica conducted an impact study of the pandemic on the live music sector. This report can be found at https://iksafrica.com/reports/Impact.


The #DMF2020 yielded the following results:

  • 637 work opportunities were created (406 artists and 231 technical and production crew).
  • 130 music project applications were received.
  • 63 streamed concerts were selected for support, with 3 concerts cancelled due to COVID 19 related complications.
  • 69 venues and 13 streaming platforms (You tube, Facebook, Quicket, etc.) were utilised.
  • 29 artist partnerships were leveraged.


In addition to the #DMF2020 last year, Concerts SA supported a range of music venues, promoters, orchestras, and university music departments through the SAMRO Foundation’s concert funding subsidy. These subsidies made it possible for more online concerts to be produced, thereby creating employment opportunities for many artists and technical production staff.


For media enquiries, contact: media@jtcomms.co.za | Phone: (011) 788 7632 | www.jtcomms.co.za

For project enquiries, contact: dmf@iksafrica.com | www.iksafrica.com  #ConcertsSA #DMF2021


Picture: Yonela Manana (by Suzi Bernstein)


About Concerts SA 

Concerts SA is a live music project that has impacted over 10 000 artists and 900 venues across southern Africa. Aimed at supporting live music, the Digital Mobility Fund finds its roots in the Concerts SA Music Mobility Fund. Initiated in 2013, with funding support for the pilot project from the British Council, the Music Mobility Fund offers opportunities for South African musicians to undertake music tours across southern Africa. To encourage ongoing ‘movement’ in the locked-down music sector, Concerts SA opened the call for applications for the 2020 DIGITAL MOBILITY FUND in September 2020 and again in April this year. For more information, please visit our website www.concertssa.co.za, follow @ConcertsSA on Twitter, or like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ConcertsSA.


About IKS Cultural Consulting 

IKS is a consulting and project management agency based on sound research and analysis. IKS provides strategic consulting, planning and project management services in arts and culture. Established in 2004, IKS took over the management of the Concerts SA programme in April 2020.

Visit: www.iksafrica.com , follow @IKSAfrica on Twitter or like IKS Africa on Facebook.


About the NAC PESP Program

The Presidency has made a special employment stimulus programme available to the sector to disburse via the National Arts Council and the National Film and Video Foundation. The Presidential Employment Stimulus Programme (PESP) is geared towards employment creation and retention initiatives for artists, creatives, heritage sector workers and cultural workers. This includes (but is not limited to) support to innovation in digitisation efforts for content creation and the dissemination and development of e-commerce systems.



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