Founded by Xolile Madinda (aka X) in 2011, Aroundhiphop is a Grahamstown-based arts
platform that facilitates the production of rap music projects, films and educational events all geared towards increasing our peoples’ political awareness. The operations of Aroundhiphop in its 5 years of existence have been informed by Madinda’s political consciousness and activism.During this time Aroundhiphop has grown into a recognized brand in the Eastern Cape Hip hop community. A partnership with the National Arts Festival has resulted in Around Hip Hop-organised shows as part of NAF’s Fringe Festival. These live performances grant the audience an insight into the future of the Eastern Cape art community. The Live Café is an attempt to give Eastern Cape musicians a performance space that will be well-attended by an audience seeking an alternative Grahamstown experience. We also do open dialogue using murals and out door street theater for social change.
Aroundhiphop aims to build on the gains that it has made in the first 5 years of its existence.This will be done by the use of Hip Hop music and other artistic forms to promote socialchange. The hip hop mixtape has a long history of being a tool for political conscientization(here one thinks of crews like Prophets Of The City) and AroundHipHop wishes to reclaim
this history. Because Around Hip Hop also draws on indigenous African knowledge systems,we wish to have more educational dialogues for people to learn about issues of South Africaimportance though entertainment. We aim to provide a platform for socially engaged musiciansfrom the Eastern Cape to spread their message and reach a wider audience. The aim isto create a space where musicians, business people and politicians can interact with one anotherin the tradition of the anti-apartheid resistance of the Sophiatown Shebeen.