A group of 30 Cape Town Gogos (grandmothers) from Khayelitsha and Langa inspired and led 241 young girls and women as they broke the Guinness World Record for the Largest Marimba Ensemble.
The event, which took place at the food court of Tygervalley shopping centre on South Africa’s national Women’s Day, saw the 241 participants – aged between 8 and 23 years – beat the previous world record of 108 set by Australians.
The event was organised by Marimba Jam, which teaches groups of students from less privileged Cape Town schools that cannot afford music programmes, in association with the Imbewu Marimba Community.
Kiara Ramklass, the 24-year-old Capetonian founder of Marimba Jam, was recently named one of the 100 Young Mandelas and was the recipient of the Amy Biehl Foundation 2012 Youth Spirit Award.
Ramklass said: “Marimba Jam’s outreach programme offers musical education across Cape Town to address inequalities within the education system regarding musical education in underprivileged areas. The world record bid served to promote the importance of doing music at school, as well as to celebrate the talented young women of South Africa.”
The grandmothers had been secured through a variety of networks, but mainly through the Khayelitsha-based not-for-profit organisation Grandmothers Against Poverty and Aids (GAPA).
“As a result of including this group of women in our activities and offering these dignified grandmothers an opportunity to jam on the marimbas during the day’s proceedings, we are giving them an opportunity to share anecdotes from their lives with our team and all present. This to me epitomises the spirit of Women’s Day, enabling us to celebrate South Africa’s most authentic, strong women,” Ramklass added.
– African News Agency (ANA)