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Wavescape - Surfing in South Africa
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Mon, 10 December 2018

Four weeks of ocean and charity events at the Wavescape Surf and Ocean Festival culminated last night in a cheque for R100,000 going to a Cape Town community programme.


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MAKING WAVES: Grant Cleghorn, Spike, Nigel Savel & Shani Judes celebrate. Photo Byron Loker


WAVESCAPE-Poster-FINAL-WEBThe final night of surf and ocean films at the Labia Theatre in Cape Town saw Festival Director Shani Judes present the 9Miles Project with the R100,000 required to bring current fund-raising efforts up from R170,000 to the R270,000 needed for a mini-bus.

The money, which was part of R782,000 raised at the Wavescape Artboard Project auction, was given to the head of the 9Miles Project, Nigel Savel, to hoots of excitement from the audience, which included youngsters from the programme. "We have no words to express our gratitude," Savel said.

The evening was the finale of a bumper Wavescape Festival that saw full houses for ocean-related events and charity functions, including Artboard Project, Clifton Beach Screening, Slide Night, Film Festival and Filmmakers’ Master Class. The 2018 iteration included premieres of films including local big wave documentary Satori Film and the US blockbuster Momentum Generation; the launch of The Sexy, Ugly, Beautifuls book with John McCarthy; the Spike Swell Course; Big Wave Night & Exhibition; and Beach Co-op Beach Clean-up.

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BIG WAVE NIGHT: A rootsy gathering of big wave surfers and medium wave surfers. James Puttick


Last night was the culmination of a partnership between Grant Cleghorn of Patagonia store Gone Outdoors, Patrick Burnett Wooden Surfboards, filmmaker Bryan Little and the 9Miles Project to get their youth into Burnett's workshop to create four incredible wooden surfboards, which were used to raise funds for a 9Miles van. A raffle for one of the surfboards, a hand-crafted wooden longboard, was drawn last night, and Kirsten Meyer of Cape Town was the lucky recipient.

Festival director Judes was happy with how the festival had gone in 2018: “The best part of the festival is seeing everyone’s willingness to participate whether it’s dedicating days to paint surf boards, putting a talk together and the courage to speak to 300 people at Slide Night. My absolute favorite is visiting artists in their studios. I get a little glimpse into their world of arting and a bit of the process that happens behind the scenes of them creating the work they do.

“Another favorite is letting our beneficiaries know how much we are donating to them. As we grow we are able to help more organisations grow, and watch former grass roots groups become globally-recognised forces for change.”

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HEART BOARDS: Nik Rabinowitz worked a crowd of 200 to raise R782k. Photo James Puttick


Co-founder of the festival Steve Pike wanted to extend thanks to the partners and beneficiaries: “We just want to express our gratitude to our friends and partners - in particular to our new headline partner Jack Black Beer - who make all of this possible. Our collaboration with our partners follow mutually aligned goals of wanting to see social change for the good, and to build a world that cares for our oceans, upon which we are so reliant.

“We may be raising money for our beneficiaries, but they in turn reciprocate by spreading the cause far and wide, which makes us feel like a collective force to be reckoned with. Now it's the holidays, and time to go immerse ourselves in the big blue!”

This year's Slide Night included animal whisperer Anna Breytenbach, adaptive surfing inspiration David Nhlapo, offshore benthic ecologist Zoleka Filander, and plastic recycling guru Chandru Wadhwani, who spoke to a packed audience at the prestigious Centre for the Book in Cape Town. There was also a daring big wave rescue video and analysis, a journey into the kelp forests of the Cape, a oceanographer’s journey and a tough tale of surfing under apartheid.

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OCEAN CALLING: Swati Thiyagarajan spoke of the need to save the kelp forests. Photo Rolando


The Clifton 4th Beach movie night was a hit in welcome balmy weather and light winds, with more than 2,000 people enjoying the Vans premiere of Can’t Steal Our Vibe, the uplifting story of a how pro American surfers and top Cape Town talent Mikey February brought a container of 750 surfboards to South Africa for surfing development projects. Also screened were surfing shorts Blue Intensity and Sand in the Sky, while the main feature was the award-winning film Emocean.

To promote the City’s amazing locations, diverse talent and world-class infrastructureThe third free Filmmakers’ Masterclass presented by Wesgro, curated by Christopher Mason of Mason Brothers’ Films, aimed to give young filmmakers insights into making documentary films, but also aimed to boost the recent launch of F/LM Cape Town - a joint initiative between the City of Cape Town and the local film industry to promote the City’s amazing locations, diverse talent and world-class infrastructure.

The 2018 Masterclass focused on Documentary Film: A Roadmap to Success, and interrogated ways to make meaningful stories that reflect the nature and reality of our lives and turn them into successful films. Speakers included acclaimed documentary director Jolynn Minnaar; 16th Man filmmaker Cliff Bestall; Sisters of the Wilderness Director Karen Slater; Izzette Mostert from the Documentary Filmmakers Association; Monica Rorvik, Head of Wesgro Film and Media Promotion Unit, and Refiloe Hlabioa from the National Film and Video Foundation.

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F/LM CAPE TOWN: New beginnings for the film industry in Cape Town. Photo Faine Loubser


Wavescape screened a record 29 feature, medium and short films with the final component screening at the Labia Cinema on Orange Street from Thursday 6 to Sunday 9 December. Films selected for Wavescape included the Robert Redford-directed film Momentum Generation by Universal Pictures, the story of the Kelly Slater generation of innovative surfers. The Siberian film Priboi, which won best film at the London Surf Film Festival. Wavescape also screened the Australian ocean surfing activist film Never Town, and Beyond the Noise, a visual feast of surfing in remote locations by award-winning filmmaker Andrew Kaineder.

All proceeds from the Artboard Project go to ocean beneficiaries NSRI, Waves for Change, Shark Spotters, 9Miles Project, Ocean Pledge, Beach Co-op and South African Adaptive Surfing. Last year’s art auction raised R772,000.

The Festival headline partner was Jack Black Beer. Supporting partners were Wesgro, Vans, Petco, Marine Stewardship Council, Long Beach Capital, Gone, Mami Wata, York Surf, and Zigzag. Thanks also to the Bay Hotel in Camps Bay.


More details: www.wavescapefestival.com
Social Media: Instagram and Twitter @WavescapeSA
Facebook.com/WavescapeFestival

#WavescapeFestival #BigWaveNight #ArtboardProject #ArtboardAuction #SatoriFilm #SlideNight #SpikeSwellCourse #SexyUglyBeautifuls #WesgroMasterClass #Clifton4thfilmnight #BeachCleanup #Surffilmfestival #LabiaCinema #Surffilms #jackblackbeer

@jackblackbeer @jackblackstaproom @petco1ispet @york.surf @gone_outdoor @vans66_za @zigzagsurf @mamiwatasurf @wesgro @nsristation26kommejie @sharkspotters @thebeachco_op @oceanpledge @9milesproject @adaptivesurfingsouthafrica @wavesforchange @MSCecolabel


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