If ever there was a time – a week, a month, a year – when we needed song, dance and light, it was this one. The Stanford Festival’s motto is ‘permission to play’ and the children of Stanford were grateful as well as happy to do just that.
Nobody let the necessity for masks and hand-sanitizers, thermometers or social distancing get in the way of letting off some steam and having a jolly good time. The children also learned a lot. In a mere five days, they went from novices to competent in playing the recorder, dancing and expressing themselves through play. They let themselves relax into happiness – surely the best gift they could have this holiday season.
There were two significant occasions as a result. On the Friday evening, parents and invited guests (limited numbers to facilitate social distancing) in the church hall of the NG Kerk) were treated to an outstanding evening of … well, joy. There isn’t another adequate word for it. Maybe add hope and optimism as well. It was enormously cheering to see these young people engage so absolutely with the arts, and with play.
Performances on the village green were spirited and fun, marred only when our national heroes (Eskom) decided to have a power outage and cut off the music. The rain held off at the right moments and everybody had a good time.
The festival was put together and organized by Creative Skills Factory. The CBN choir under the baton of Vuyokazi Siza was invited to take part. We hope to work more closely with Creative Skills next year in what we all wish will be an easier year than 2020!