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Manana commented on Developing Talents in Art for self-sustenance.

I think the issue is more having the wrong career guidance. The Education system brands core academia as important and sidelines the creative and performing arts, categorising them as co-curricular activities. The government is on a drive to promote sciences with little emphasis on promoting the arts. As a result many people including the artists themselves don’t see creative and performing as a career but rather as a hobby. I know many talented artists who are doing accounting or engineering jobs and have completely thrown out the arts. When asked why many will tell you that they can’t survive off the arts.
This tells you about the issue at hand which is the system.
The artistic process or value chain needs to be complete, the development of a system around the arts especially marginalized art forms like indigenous music and dance. Corporate and Media companies pump tons of money into pop art forms that are not as artistically rich as the sort of Music that Rockies performs. Unlike a some parts of Africa, Europe and the states, Uganda has absolutely no functional local system or funding in place for heritage and non-conventional arts. Leaving the fate of the non conventional art forms to be determined by a purely commercial driven system.Therefore there is urgent need to create a functional system that focuses on developing non-conventional art forms. The main segments in this chain would be 1-Discovery and scouting, 2-skills development/training, 3-recording, 4-promotion, 5-Mentorship to ensure continuity.
Rockies’s idea is brilliant; it scouts and discovers new artists, trains them with practical skills and promotes them through events and platforms. This is a substantial contribution to the artistic process.
It would take a lot for an organisation to cover all the segments in the chain effectively and that’s why I think that Rockies should specialise in the above mentioned three segments. The gap can be filled through strategic partnerships with organisations that have specialized in other segments.
The three segments if well-developed having in mind tourism, schools outreach and merchandising among others, can cut out a niche for Rockies.
I happened to be in the audience at Rockies's ground breaking concert at Obliugato and ever since I love the passion, energy and the genuine desire to grow the arts and empower others. The Rockies ideology is not a selfish one and I really like that! All the best!