The Rainbow Academy is a South African based, not for profit Performing Arts Academy aimed at helping talented but disadvantaged youth at grassroots achieve education, social upliftment and further opportunity for success. The Academy is based in the Western Cape (Cape Town) and has been in operation since June 2010.
Their programme is targeted at youth between the ages of 17-25 to educate, provide skills training , qualifications and jobs in the Performing Arts and Culture, Heritage and Tourism Industries. It also aims to bridge the gap between higher and tertiary education, to build sustainability in The Arts and to develop entrepreneurial career paths through combined platforms of business and leadership training, mentorship and job placements offered through their programme.
The Rainbow Academy is a school of performing arts and culture aimed at empowering the youth from less privileged communities.
Established in June 2010, the Academy is extremely passionate about giving hope to youth living under socio-economic hardship. It sets out to create a structured career path to bridge the gap in education for students with a Matric Certificate, but no financial means to develop their talent in the performing arts.
The gifted teachers at the Academy go beyond what is required of them to empower students and look to convert each student’s passion into a stable income.
The management board, which is the driving force of the operation, comprises Bob Rightford (marketing, development), Frank Gormley (planning, finance), Denay Willie (teaching, creative), Len Keating (strategy, human resources) and Melanie Mahona (PGWC, government and national bodies).
The Rainbow Academy also has a range of stakeholders who have provided financial and non-financial support since its inception. They have played an integral role in the training and job placement aspect of the student’s growth path. Other stakeholders and partners include Mandela Rhodes Place, Eurocape, Old Mutual, Independent News and Media, Ogilvy, The Artscape Theatre, The University of the Western Cape, The CTICC, The Department of Education and the Department of Trade and Industry.
It is an NGO and relies heavily on sponsorship and donations in order to provide less privileged youth with the hope of a sustainable future.
It accepts applicants with a National Senior Certificate who provide stipulated documentation of their need for financial assistance. They must be between the ages of 18 and 25 and need to demonstrate an acceptable level of potential in their speciality within the performing arts field. The curriculum is designed to give the student a year’s worth of education and the necessary qualifications to be accepted into higher education. Practical platforms of skills transfer, performance showcasing and earning potential through job placements and internships also form part of our curriculum.
what have we accomplished thus far?
The remarkable talent of our students, with only six months of formal training, was showcased at the Rainbow Room – a live entertainment venue in Cape Town hosting the professional debut production of The Cape Town Show. Our students were employed as both cast and lead members in the show and doubled up as waitrons to patrons, dignitaries and paying audiences local, national and international. The show not only provided employment and exposure for our students, but also showcased nine of our city’s new, up-and-coming performers, writers, producers and choreographers. It achieved high profile rave public reviews, endorsed support and sponsorship. Other achievements include live TV and radio interviews. Special performances for President Jacob Zuma at The ANC’s 99th Presidential Banquet, for Premier Helen Zille and for former great political, historical leaders such as Albie Sachs, Ronnie Kasrils and a host of national and international dignitaries.