Modern Athlete Magazine Issue 143, July 2021 July 2020 - Page 52

MULTISPORT was promoting 500 other musicians and bands ,” she says .
Carina just after finishing her Walker Bay crossing … shivering uncontrollably , but just as unable to stop smiling !
Modest to a fault , Carina will never tell you that as a soloist she has performed with the Cape Philharmonic and KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic orchestras , and won numerous music awards , including the ATKV Muziq Category Prize , Distell Music Prize , Huguenot Prize and various SAMRO prizes . She has also been nominated for a Kanna Award . However , it is her work with Sterling EQ , an all-female trio ( originally a quartet ) that has changed the face of instrumental music in South Africa , that she is most proud of .
“ By 2008 , we had entered a golden age of performing , with lots of corporate functions , so I started my own band , Sterling EQ , using electric instruments that give us a cool sound , says Carina . The group boasts four successful releases – all of which were executive produced by Carina – plus three major music awards ( SAMA , Tempo and Ghoema ), over 1000 live performances , and thousands of followers worldwide . “ We have toured all around the world , playing in front of hundreds of thousands of people , and I live for the gigs , feeding off the energy of fellow musicians . It ’ s been an amazing journey !”
Making Ends Meet
However , Carina says things have changed in South Africa in recent years , making it much harder to survive as a musician . “ With the economy going down in the last few years , it has been much tougher , because musical entertainment is seen as luxury item , and it has become difficult to monetise it – and that was even before COVID hit us . Now the pandemic has taken everything away , so I don ’ t think anybody can call themselves a performing artist right now – and I ’ m not sure if it is going to come back . At least , not the way it used to be ,” says Carina .
As a result of lockdown restrictions preventing music concerts and functions where Sterling EQ could have been asked to perform , the trio have had to find a different way to earn a living and survive . While bandmates Ariella Caira and Luca Hart are both teaching , Carina has launched a live-streaming service , covering any organisation or event that needs to be streamed due to people not being allowed to attend in person , from musical performances and sport events to meetings , conferences and even funeral services . And she says she is just relieved to have something to fall back onto while the music has been silenced .
“ Imagine how hard it has been for artists and performers . Their whole industry has simply stopped , so they have had no income all these months , which has meant a whole lifestyle change for most , while others have even lost their houses . Most don ’ t have anything to fall back on , or the resources to keep them going … and just think how it has been for couples who are both musicians or dancers . Some have tried other things and not succeeded , and that is driving me to try help others . I feel that doing these swims to raise funds to help them gives me a bit of indemnity from feeling like I am too lucky , and taking more than my share of the pie . I am trying to help people who are desperate .”
The Next Challenge Awaits
Unsurprisingly , Carina is already looking for new challenges , and says if anybody has ideas , they must let her know . “ I may do a ‘ first ’ from Plettenberg Bay
Images : Dave de Beer & Courtesy Carina Bruwer
52 ISSUE 143 JULY 2021 / www . modernathlete . co . za