CAPE TOWN — In the room where it happened (the Baxter Theater here), the composer and actor Lin-Manuel Miranda, the filmmaker Spike Lee, the visual artist Carrie Mae Weems and the theater director Phyllida Lloyd were announced on Saturday as the new mentors in the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, which pairs eminent cultural figures with emerging artists in their fields.
The new mentors and some of their protégés were announced in a ceremony that also celebrated the end of the 2018-19 pairings in dance, music, architecture and literature, the other disciplines included in the Arts Initiative. This year, a new open category mentorship has been added, to incorporate artists who work across different disciplines. Mr. Miranda, the creator and star of the hit musical “Hamilton,” is the first mentor in this category.
“Lin-Manuel is only just 40, and an incredibly versatile creative figure who works across theater, music and film in a variety of ways,” said Rebecca Irvin, the head of philanthropy at Rolex, in an interview. “He seemed like a perfect, and really fun choice, and given how busy he is, we were extremely happy that he agreed.” Ms. Irvin added that she was happy that women were well represented in this round. “I am delighted to acknowledge the talent, knowledge, generosity and amazing bodies of work” of the new mentors, she said.
The Arts Initiative, which began in 2002, now has a high-powered list of mentor and protégé alumni, including Alfonso Cuarón, Nicholas Hlobo, David Hockney, Philip Glass, Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker, Toni Morrison, Álvaro Siza, Tracy K. Smith and Julie Taymor. The program asks the mentors and protégés to spend at least six weeks together over the mentoring period, and provides the protégés with a stipend in addition to funds for travel and expenses. In the current cycle, Mr. Lee will work with Kyle Bell, from the United States; Ms. Lloyd will work with Whitney White from the United States; and Ms. Weems with Camila Rodríguez Triana from Colombia. Mr. Miranda will choose his protégé in the coming weeks.