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Monday, April 25, 2022


Deadline: May 22, 2022

The Arts & Culture Trust announces an open call for the Nyoloha Scholarship Programme, proudly supported by Nedbank, Sun City and Sun International.

Stand a chance to win a fully-paid scholarship to study at an arts institution of your choice in South Africa!

The Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) Nyoloha Scholarship Programme (NSP) is a partnership between ACT and Nedbank Arts Affinity. Their goal is to create an opportunity to fund higher education for young South African performers and visual artists.

In 2022, ACT welcomed Sun City as a new partner and as the host for the Road to Sun City scholarship journey, as well as returning sponsor and partner Sun International, in supporting the national roll-out of the ACT NSP.

The ACT invites school leavers and young people who want to study towards a performing arts degree and pave their way to a sustainable future. The open call goes live on on April 26, 2022, and will run for four weeks until May 22, 2022, when applications close.

Online applications are open nationwide to grade 11 and grade 12 learners, as well as young people up to 25 years. To qualify, applicants must have achieved a university exemption. The categories are visual arts, singing, dancing and acting. Parental or guardian consent and a registration fee of R100 is required to register for the national auditions. Auditions will be held via Zoom in June, 2022.

In Sesotho, Nyoloha means 'rise', and the ACT NSP is part of the new ACT strategy to educate, uplift and empower those wishing to make a career in the arts and culture sector. By facilitating knowledge-creation opportunities through tertiary education and work experience within the arts industry, graduates are equipped with life and business skills so that they are career-ready and able to actively contribute to the growth and stimulation of the creative sector.

ACT and Nedbank scholarships have been available since 2009. “Following a two-year hiatus owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, we are delighted to relaunch the undergraduate scholarship programme that brings together talented, ambitious young people from across South Africa, taking them through various training activities for a period of time, then introducing them to the world of professional arts through an intensive week of training, talks and performances, culminating in a showcase and exhibition.

“We are thrilled that Sun City has stepped on board as our partner in shaping the Road to Sun City, where they will host the finals week, and gala finals event. The partnership with Sun City extends beyond the ACT NSP with a roll-out of development workshops and mentorship equipping arts and culture practitioners in the North West Province with business skills and networking opportunities,' says ACT Interim CEO, Jessica Denyschen.

Fortnightly activities for the ACT NSP will run from June to September 2022 and be managed by ACT-appointed mentors who will regularly engage with mentees and provide professional support. In the final week of each month, the work undertaken by the mentees is rated as part of the short-listing exercise. Students who don’t make the ratings will continue with the programme, but they will not be eligible for the finals. However, subject to their body of work being evaluated over the training and mentorship period, the top three 'drop-off' students will be selected to join the 12 finalists as wild cards.

ACT, together with long-term partner Nedbank and returning partner Sun International, strongly believes in helping to build a better, more educated, more sustainable arts industry in South Africa. The ACT NSP rewards commitment, excellence and growth potential. In addition to the scholarships, it also offers research grants and the creation of an alumni network.

“A degree from a respected institution enables people to change their lives and that of their families and communities. It gives people access to the world and the confidence to take the lead in making a positive impact in society. A degree in the performing arts empowers people to help shape the soul of our nation,” says Tobie Badenhorst, Head of Group Sponsorships and Cause Marketing at Nedbank.

Heidi Edson, Group Socioeconomic Development (SED) Specialist at Sun International, adds: “Given Sun International’s long history of supporting the arts and culture in all its forms, we are proud to support the ACT. As a group, we are synonymous with entertainment and our properties around the country regularly offer a platform to talented local artists. We also focus on schools and arts organisations close to each of our properties.”

The final week runs from Monday, October 3 to Friday, October 8 at Sun City. It comprises masterclasses facilitated by industry leaders and will be attended by the 12 finalists and the three wildcards. The culmination visual arts exhibition and showcase will take place on Saturday, October 8, when the winner of the main prize, a fully paid scholarship to study at an arts institution of their choice in South Africa, will be announced.

Khumo Magano, Head of SED, Community and Stakeholder Engagement at Sun International, says: “In 100 years from now, it will not matter the house I lived in, the car I drove and not even the size of my bank account; but what will be of utmost importance will be to have made a positive difference to another person’s life, especially a child. The principle and emphasis is about investing in our youth, or next generation, with the faith that when we do it well, they can also do the same for their next generations. In so doing we ensure sustainable development in a true sense.

“Arts and culture remain an integral part of our society, livelihoods and heritage as a country, or global village. It is also an opportunity to contribute towards the National Development Plan 2030, including the Sustainable Development Goals by virtue of ethos and principles embedded in this broad development agenda. With the economic impact it has especially on the tourism industry, which is our core business, one can only express gratitude for the privilege of playing a part in nurturing talent – not only for today’s generation's pleasure but also for those of the future.”


To link direct to the Arts & Culture Trust’s site, click on the ACT logo to the right of this article or visit