Ballantine’s Scotch Whisky and Boiler Room presented Stay True South Africa this past March – a one-night-only house music experience held at Constitution Hill in downtown Johannesburg featuring global and local legends Black Coffee, Okmalumkoolkat, Culoe de Song, Shimza and Black Motion.
The world’s leading underground music event saw over 600 house-music fans from all walks of life partying until midnight. Key to the show’s format is its live broadcast to a global audience via Boilerroom.TV/StayTrue.
Hundreds of thousands of people watched the show live from 141 different countries, with 15% of viewers coming from South Africa alone.
As with other Stay True countries around the world, Stay True South Africa culminated in the production of an online documentary, shot on location in Johannesburg in the lead up to the event.
That documentary, titled Stay True South Africa – A Dancing Nation
has just been released
and highlights South Africa’s house music (r)evolution as it is thrust more and more into the global spotlight.
The eight-minute film, produced and directed by Lebogang Rasethaba from Egg Films
, takes people on a journey through South Africa’s house music scene. It features interviews with global and local musicians and leaders in the industry. The film explores the ideas of South African music, its genesis and evolution – and in particular the influence of dance, how it shapes and is shaped by the music our homegrown talent produces.
Says Rasethaba: “South Africa is rich with stories, many of them untold and undocumented. So to continue to discover such exciting stories through film is an honour for me; it comes with a lot of responsibility and it’s something I take very seriously.”
“When I make a song I always picture how people will dance to it,” says Black Coffee.
“Dance is a language. I am saying stuff with my body,” says Okmalumkoolkat.
“The Stay True South Africa activation in Johannesburg was a staggering achievement, a high watermark for the global Ballantine’s and Boiler Room partnership,” says Boiler Room’s commercial director Steven Appleyard.
“Together we spent a week in South Africa showcasing grassroots local talent broadcast from off beat locations, culminating in a spectacular tent pole live show at Constitution Hill that had the crowd going wild – both those at the event and people tuning in online.”
“The spirit and energy of the event at Constitution Hill was on another level, and the reception of local attendees was truly humbling. Stay True South Africa showcased the very best in authentic South African electronic music to the world, which is precisely what the Stay True Journeys is all about,” adds Appleyard.
The South African event continues the global partnership between Ballantine’s, the world’s no. 2 Scotch Whisky, and Boiler Room, one of the world’s most popular and authentic online music channels. Launched in early 2014 with its first event in Mexico, this partnership saw the creation of the ‘Boiler Room & Ballantine’s Stay True Journeys’, which explores and celebrates the stories of the world’s most vibrant music scenes.