Our dream is that every child is given the opportunity to try their hand at music. We provide a choice of 26 instruments for the pupils to choose from and these instruments are taught by professional Cape Town teachers. Pupils begin on recorder or violin and progress on an annual basis through a choice of different instruments. For those who do not continue, at the very least they have experienced the joy of music, which they otherwise would never have been able to do.
All pupils are required to play in one or more of the following: Beginner Ensembles, Orchestra, Rock Band, Choirs, Brass Band or Jazz Band. A shared musical experience cuts across language barriers, cultural differences, and socio-economic differences to create a community. Ensembles become a safe, shared place for children emotionally, and help them develop as positive, healthy young adults. Performing in ensembles brings young people together which encourages teamwork and mutual support, all the while creating unforgettable memories.
The creation of an African Instrument Orchestra where South African children of all races perform side by side on our country’s indigenous instruments, is our dream. All pupils partake in indigenous cultural instrument tuition for one year as part of their basic education at which point selected pupils are auditioned to join the African Instrument Orchestra. Indigenous cultural musical heritage in South Africa is vast and complex but we focus on Mbira, Djembe, Reed Shakers, Uhadi Bow, Ngyunga and Kudu Horns. This project has been initiated under the guidance of South African icon, Dizu Plaatjies and we believe it contributes to increased understanding of South African indigenous cultural history and its natural participation in everyday life. The AIO collaborates with our other ensembles, in an experimental inclusion of cross-racial and cross-cultural participation as a one of its kind creative platform.
Sadly the underprivileged high schools in Hout Bay do not offer music as a matric subject and gifted individuals, who show a good aptitude for music and a passion for pursuing music as a career, are left unqualified for auditions after matric. For pupils interested in tertiary education studies, KMA provides focused training and qualifications until they are ready. KMA has successfully entered 3 of its senior pupils into the UCT Jazz Degree programme. This covers basic music education such as harmony, theory, music history, technical instrumental understanding and Aural skills training. KMA is available them for additional resources, tutorship or financial help. Bridging that gap for our young adults is the goal of this programme.
The development of young people’s beliefs about their abilities is necessary for developing a growth mindset as a means of achieving successful performance outcomes in life in general. Music contributes substantially to this. Our many opportunities to perform throughout the year offer the pupil chances to try it out and ultimately to enjoy presenting their talents and efforts to an adoring audience. Pupils perform in monthly lunchtime concerts, quarterly soirees and department concerts. We hold a pupil showcase once a year, including adhoc requests for performances.
EVENTS & FUNCTIONS
KMA takes relevant pupils to the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra rehearsals to expose pupils to professional musicians. Regular performances for both pupils as well as the broader community form an important link to providing cultural experiences to the Hout Bay valley: KMA transforms into a professional Intimate Soiree Venue on an average of once a month to support South African music artists and guests from abroad. These wonderful soirees provide opportunities for the pupils and community to attend concerts and become part of the audience. The KMA Jazz Band holds an annual fundraiser which includes professional Cape Town Jazz musicians who play with the band for the evening.
Every child should have a safe place to spend their afternoons. Every child should have a nourishing meal, access to safe transport, trustworthy caregivers and supportive adults who encourage them to build dreams and a future. Many children in South Africa do not have these basic needs met and are left to fend for themselves, exposed to all manner of abuse and the temptation to engage in risky behaviour. This pattern sadly becomes a cycle where generation after generation remain trapped in the poverty tragedy.
In addition to our music education course, we are concerned with the general well-being and psycho-social support of each child. To that end we provide safe transport to and from KMA, a daily nourishing meal for every pupil and school-homework support. An auxiliary social worker, resident in Hout Bay, is made available to pupils who show reason for concern. Volunteers, supervisors and staff are engaged in school homework support for pupils who struggle. Various pupil welfare opportunities for KMA include eye tests and purchasing of spectacles, medical attention and clothing.
The firm call to "leave no one behind" and “endeavour to reach the furthest behind first” is central to the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and our guiding principle as we work towards an inclusive society. Our mission is to break the cycle of poverty through investing in the lives of those most vulnerable, the future citizens of our country. A child who has been supported, who has found hope and who has developed self-confidence is more likely to complete their schooling, to have the drive and ambition to continue their studies and to build a better life for themselves.
We all know that finding a job and becoming independent is a priority - our learners develop a growth mind-set enabling essential 21st century skills such as communication, collaboration, and critical-thinking. The unique synergy between our children’s natural resilience and grit, and the cognitive flexibility that music education develops, results in creative, self-confident and motivated young people. KMA is a place which brings hope in their otherwise hopeless circumstances.