An analysis of articles on classical music in the SABC Bulletin

Meyer, Karin (2015-12)

Thesis (MMus)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The history of broadcasting in South Africa involves the political, cultural, intellectual, technological, and social aspects of the history of South Africa. The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), as South Africa‟s first public broadcaster, played an important role in both these histories. It is therefore important to gain a deeper understanding of the SABC throughout South Africa's history. The SABC has been the subject of much recent research – from its programming and programme content to censorship and the political role it played during the apartheid era. An aspect of the SABC's activities that seems not to have been studied yet is the publications of the SABC, including the SABC Bulletin. The SABC Bulletin was published weekly from 1961 to 1973, and was used to advertise and promote the contents of the forthcoming week's broadcasts. A study of articles on classical music in this publication may enrich and inform current understandings of the SABC and its role during the apartheid era. These articles illustrate the prominent role that the SABC played in the establishment and promotion of local classical music, both in respect of composers and performers. Through these articles on classical music and the subsequent classical music broadcast on the SABC radio stations, the SABC provided a forum or public platform for the work of these local musicians. Providing such exposure to musicians of a high calibre may also have served the purpose of setting a benchmark for the quality of local classical music to be composed and performed. It is argued that a degree of contradiction existed between these music Stellenbosch programmes and the articles in which they were discussed on the one side and the overt political agenda on the other. Taking note of these contradictions will allow for a more nuanced understanding of the SABC before 1994. These articles represent an important source for the historiography of classical music in South Africa. They provide interesting insights into the classical music landscape of South Africa during the years 1961 to 1973, and detail classical music events which may be worthy of remembering. It is thus suggested that these articles could enrich our understanding of classical music and its role at the SABC and in South Africa during the years of their publication.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die geskiedenis van die uitsaaiwese in Suid-Afrika toon raakpunte met die politieke, kulturele, intellektuele, tegnologiese, en sosiale aspekte van die geskiedenis van Suid-Afrika. Die Suid-Afrikaanse Uitsaaikorporasie (SAUK), as Suid-Afrika se eerste openbare uitsaaier, het „n belangrike rol in beide hierdie geskiedenisse gespeel. Gevolglik is dit belangrik om `n dieper insig in die SAUK in die konteks van hierdie dubbele historiese verloop te verkry. Die SAUK was reeds die onderwerp van heelwat onlangse navorsing – van sy programaanbod en programinhoud tot by sensuur en die politieke rol wat dit gedurende die apartheidsera gespeel het. „n Aspek van die SAUK wat tot dusver nog nie nagevors is nie, is die publikasies wat deur dié korporasie vrygestel is, spesifiek die SAUK Bulletin. Die SAUK Bulletin is weekliks vanaf 1961 tot 1973 gepubliseer en het ten doel gehad om die programme van die daaropvolgende week te adverteer en toe te lig. „n Studie van die artikels in hierdie publikasie wat fokus op klassieke musiek verbreed ons insig in die SAUK en die rol wat dit gedurende die apartheidsera gespeel het. Die genoemde artikels illustreer die prominente rol van die SAUK in die vestiging en bevordering van plaaslike klassieke musiek, beide ten opsigte van komponiste en uitvoerende kunstenaars. Deur hierdie artikels en die daaropvolgende uitsendings het die SAUK 'n landswye openbare forum vir die werk van plaaslike musici geskep. Die blootstelling wat vooraanstaande musici daardeur gekry het, het terselfdertyd gedien om 'n maatstaf vir die hoë gehalte van plaaslike klassieke musiek daar te stel. Verder word die standpunt ingeneem dat daar `n mate van teenstrydigheid was tussen hierdie musiekprogramme en die artikels waarin hulle bespreek is aan die een kant, en die korporasie se blatante politieke agenda aan die ander kant. Die erkenning van hierdie teenstrydigheid sal bydra tot 'n meer genuanseerde begrip van die SAUK voor 1994. Die betrokke artikels moet ook as ‟n belangrike bron vir die historiografie van klassieke musiek in Suid-Afrika beskou word. Hulle verskaf interessante insigte in die landskap van klassieke musiek gedurende die jare 1961 tot 1973 en dokumenteer musiekgebeurtenisse wat verdien om onthou te word. Hulle verryk ons insig in die klassieke musiek van daardie jare en die rol wat die SAUK daarin gespeel het.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/97912
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