For the fifth year running, the Nando’s Music Exchange, aka Nando’s MX, brought together talented up-and-coming musicians from around the world to experience an action-packed few days of mentoring and jamming in London. The aim is to give participants the opportunity to develop skills, and fuel each other’s musical success through collaboration.
Previous mentors of the programme include the likes of Stormzy, Dope Saint Jude, Sho Madjozi, Lethal Bizzle, Example and Ella Eyre.
Nando’s South Africa has been involved for the past three years, sending music students and an experienced mentor to take part in this epic music melting pot. This year, we sponsored eight musicians – three students from the Bridges of Music Academy in Langa (one of our proud music development partners), four students from the Campus of Performing Arts (COPA) and one of our Nandocas, Mxolisi Vutha, whose talents were spotted by our Nando’s radio team on our Heatwave station.
These talented musos joined others from the UK and Australia, as well as industry experts and celebrity musicians. Between 10 and 13 September a total of 40 talented students aged between 18 and 25 from the UK, South Africa and Australia, got to turn the heat up on their creative careers.
They were mentored by three established global artists; UK rapper and MOBO award winner, Nadia Rose; South African vocalist, producer and founder of independent label ‘Albino Black’, Nonku Phiri; and Australian rapper and winner of the triple j Unearthed ‘Artist of the Year’, Kwame.
Aside from two days of studio time, participants were also exposed to talks and Q&A sessions on a multitude of topics to help them kick-start their music careers, from building a team to song writing, staying true and finding a niche, and understanding the business aspects of the music industry.
The programme finished with a public listening session at The White Rabbit in Shoreditch, followed by a party, where the DJs got to show their skills and everybody had fun on the dance floor.
The tracks produced during the programme were of such a high quality that DJ Sian Anderson chose to showcase two of them, featuring our Bridges Academy candidates and Mxolisi, on her BBC Radio 1 on the Saturday following MX.
Well done to our South African team – we look forward to hearing you on local airwaves and watching you continue to bring the heat!
1-54 is the first leading international art fair dedicated to contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora with annual editions in London, New York and Marrakech. Nando’s, in partnership with Spier Arts Trust, is a Silver Sponsor of the London event and once again helped to fire up the 2019 edition in early October this year.
The name 1-54 refers to the bringing together of art from the 54 countries that make up the African continent. Founded by Touria El Glaoui in 2013, it is a sustainable and dynamic platform that is engaged in contemporary dialogue and exchange.
In 2019, the London edition of the fair expanded, welcoming 45 carefully-selected international galleries, showcasing the works of 140 multidisciplinary artists of established and emerging profile. More than 18,000 visitors attended the fair.
Nando’s and Spier Arts Trust exhibited as a 1-54 special project, presenting work by four Southern African artists: Nelsa Guambe, Sepideh Mehraban, Qaqambile Bead Studio and Mxolisi Dolla Sapeta.