FESTIVALS’ UNSUNG HEROES

02 Nov, 2022 - 00:11 0 Views
FESTIVALS’ UNSUNG HEROES The barricades

H-Metro

Trust Khosa Content Coordinator

THEY are hardly noticed during high-profile events until chaos breaks out.

No one in showbiz gives them credit for the perfect and reliable service they offer.

Sanity can only prevail during live shows once they do a thorough job in the screening of fans.

A shoddy job on their part can result in mayhem.

They are neither bouncers nor stage managers, but simply barricading officials.

Barricades are needed during high-profile events like music festivals to ensure the smooth flow of fans in and outside show venues.

One such man, who has been manning high-profile shows using barricades and scaffolds, is Godfrey Ngomani of Gabrem Marketing.

Having started the game close to a decade ago using plastic papers, he has since moved to using barricades and scaffolds.

The 50-year-old is evolving and winning the hearts of many promoters, including corporates.

Reflecting on his journey, and challenges in showbiz, Ngomani said:

“I started providing this service in 2015 when I used to work with music promoter Notice Chigome, who has since relocated to South Africa.

Godfrey Ngomani

“After visiting other countries like South Africa and Botswana, I realised that we were still behind.

“I felt I should take this idea home but when I started, some of the promoters didn’t understand the concept but I kept pushing.”

Ngomani, who successfully manned the recently-held Kadoma Musical Festival, said his services were now appreciated.

“Barricades are very important in the screening of fans during live shows.

“VIPs will be secured once we do a thorough job where special exit and entry points are created depending on the value of tickets.

“People who pay their money to attend high-profile events need to be safe and it’s not only bouncers who can protect them.” 

Ngomani said he was now a game-changer in showbiz.

 “I manned the October Lake Festival, a host of shows held at HICC, Jah Prayzah’s show at Werras Gardens last weekend and this weekend we are manning the Bush party at Alex Sports Club, which remains some of the high-profile events that we have hosted so far.

“My dream is to ensure that we meet the international standards as was the case at the burial of Queen Elizabeth where barricades stretched for kilometres.

“As a country, I believe we can meet those international standards and ensure the safety of our fun-loving people.

“Bouncers are not the only people who can protect fans but barricading officials like us who are usually looked down upon,” he said.

He, however, conceded that their job was under the threat from “rogue” bouncers who are causing mayhem during these events.

“We are also under the threat of the so-called rogue bouncers who usually destroy barricades to ensure they smuggle people inside the show venues.

“These guys have been on the loose for some time but it seems no one is considering our plight.

“Like promoters, we are not spared by these people who continue to cause havoc,” he said.

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