English Alive | The Launch of the 2017 English Alive
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The Launch of the 2017 English Alive

The Launch of the 2017 English Alive

The Launch of the 2017 English Alive

A lively, happy group of about 70 people gathered in the Art Centre of Springfield Convent Senior School on Thursday 24 August to launch the 2017 edition of English Alive, the annual anthology of high school writing. This is the fifty-first edition: the anthology has been published every year without a break since 1967. Attending were the Cape Town-based student contributors to English Alive 2017, their parents, friends and teachers.

Welcoming the guests were Springfield’s drama students, guiding the guests to the venue with a poem on the way. They led guests through the sobering small graveyard where some nuns from long ago are buried to the beautifully appointed Art Centre.

Terrill Nicolay, the Chairperson of the Western Cape branch of the South African Council for English Education (SACEE), welcomed the guests. Then the Editor Robin Malan (one of the founding editors in 1967) called up the young artist responsible for the front-cover artwork, Litha Mantlana and asked his teacher at The Children’s Art Centre Adriaan Alkema to hand over Litha’s gratis Artist’s copies to him.

Robin Malan then introduced six students who read their pieces:

  • Tara Boule of Springfield Convent Senior School read her poem ‘Mom’
  • Sumaya Enyegue of Claremont High School read her poem ‘To the man who stood in front of a room full of Matrics and told them fees shouldn’t fall’
  • Seth Meyer of Wynberg Boys’ High School read his piece ‘Youth’
  • Emily Muyoni of Masibambane Secondary School read ‘Welcome to my world’
  • Juliette Rose-Innes of Camps Bay High School read ‘A poem about politics’
  • Kayliyah Stevens of Eersterivier Secondary School read ‘The stupidly brave mistake’
  • Apart from the quality of the writing, these six pieces were read with a panache and confidence that were very encouraging.

The audience was then treated to a witty discourse on Words by the stand-up comedian Yaseen Barnes, who was introduced by Karen Jeynes, herself an ex-contributor to English Alive. Yaseen told us that he unexpectedly found himself looking at Peter Henshall in the audience, not as a former editor of English Alive, but as his English teacher at Lansdowne High School way back when. Made for a great picture.

Also among the guests were ex-contributors to English Alive Andisiwe Mgibantaka (2003 and 2004) and Robert van der Valk (1969), now serving as the Business Manager of English Alive.Also attending were two of the Assistant Editors, Twanji Kalula and Sharon Sheldon. Delicious snacks were provided by the Springfield tuckshop, and a very good evening was enjoyed by everyone attending.

For more information and to order copies of English Alive 2017, email englishalive@iafrica.com

Match the captions to the photos:
* From one generation to the next. Karen Jeynes, published in 1997, and her son Tim Jeynes, published in 2017
* Sumaya Enyegue of Claremont High School reads her poem
* Tara Boule of Springfield Convent Senior School reads her poem ‘Mom’
* Teacher at The Children’s Art Centre Adriaan Alkema with the cover-artist Litha Mantlana of Walmer Secondary School
* A poem to guide you on your way
* Assistant Editor Twanji Kalula, Editor Robin Malan and Seth Meyer of Wynberg Boys’ High School
* English teacher Christopher Kudyahakudadirwe and student contributor Emily Muyoni, both of Masibambane Secondary School, with the Editor Robin Malan
* Former English teacher Peter Henshall and former student Yaseen Barnes, currently a stand-up comic

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