The Soundings series of events comprise a network of inter-disciplinary arts events that are conceptualised and curated by practitioner artists and then supported by NewMusicSA as and when funding is available. As a network these events can happen anywhere in southern Africa. As inter-disciplinary arts events, these curations open new music to dialogue with other arts, and to dialogue that goes beyond a focus on ‘sound only’. The programme encourages practitioners themselves to do the conceptualisation, with NewMusicSA operating as the funding agent, as and when funds are available.
In 2015 Marietjie Pauw (flute) and Garth Erasmus (Khoi-San instruments) presented a Soundings event that interrogated the history and sounds that could relate to Roesdorp’s contested history in Stellenbosch. Paul Hanmer wrote a NewMusicSA commissioned composition for the musicians, entitled ‘... ma Wanne Kommie Druiwe?’ (2015), premièred on the event. Aryan Kaganof was commissioned by NewMusicSA to make a film response to the curated event, and he responded by producing three separate films.
In 2016 Memory Biwa and Robert Machiri presented a sound installation that acted as critical interface between mbira sound, history, memory and archives in their event entitled: ‘Listening to a listening at Pungwe Nights’.