Kaya FM And Bassline Live Present: Stogie T And Rebirth Of Cool

Kaya FM 95.9, home of the Afropolitan, and Bassline Live are excited to be bringing one of the freshest musical collaborations to the Lyric Theatre on the 29th July in the form of Stogie T (Tumi from Tumi & The Volume) and jazz collective Rebirth Of Cool – for one night of old school jazz-infused hip-hop craftsmanship.

The show brings audiences a completely fresh interpretation of hip-hop & soul.  The addition of schooled jazz maestros Rebirth Of Cool to one of South Africa’s most established and socially conscious rappers breaks new boundaries in all traditional musical sense and takes both genres to elevated heights.


Stogie T is the moniker used now by one of the countries finest rappers – Tumi (ex-Tumi & The Volume).  With a career that spanned over a decade, his impact as a rapper, poet, social commentator and record label owner have garnered him the respect of his peers, both locally and abroad.  The birth of Stogie T has resulted in a more outspoken, uninhibited and braver mouthpiece for his generation and through his personal journey he has come to the place where he feels he creatively belongs – making art that resonates with him at this current stage in his life.

Rebirth of Cool is a collective that, largely inspired by Miles Davis and the post-bebop jazz era, consists of highly trained and skilled musicians that celebrate their genre through the infusion of contemporary Hip-Hop sounds with the more avant-garde notes from yesteryear.  Consisting of Thandi Ntuli (piano & keys), Benjamin Jafta (Bass), Siphelelo Mazibuko (Drums), DJ Kenzhero (Turntables) and Tha Muzik, the band has been touted as being one of the country’s finest groups of improv maestros around.

Taking these two world-class acts and combining them for a one-night collaboration is set to be one of the greatest musical moments ever staged in the Kaya FM & Bassline Live series.  With special guests to be announced in the week, the show will consist of two 45-minute sets and is set to be one of the musical highlights of the year.

Also on board for this event is stylish urban outfitters Brentwood Clothing, who, as new affiliates of the venture, are standing behind the rich arts and culture scene in SA through this musical series.  We are excited to grow this relationship with them.

29th July – 8pm

The Lyric, Gold Reef City

Ticket prices: R150 – R250 at Computicket


Book now to avoid disappointment.


International Jazz Extravaganza, A Success for the Second Time #IJE2017

On Saturday, June 17th, the second annual International Jazz Extravaganza was nothing short of a stellar event with a star-studded line-up that took to the stage to delight audiences and inspire true jazz connoisseurs. From the big-band sounds of swing to the freedom of avant-garde and everything in between and beyond, jazz-lovers witness the world’s greatest jazz talents perform at the Durban International Convention Centre-Arena.

First on stage was pianist and sensational new vocalist, Thandi Ntuli who performed songs from her new album, “The Offering”. Thandi ensured that the IJE was a celebration of jazz by offering a pure and sophisticated performance.


Grammy award winner, Kurt Elling wowed the audience with his vocal range, jazzy tunes and stage presence.


Monty Alexander definitely brought a bit of his famous Jamaican flavour to South Africa. He united the crowd when he performed Bob Marley’s Redemption Song by encouraging the crowd to sing along.


The last performance was from Nduduzo Makhathini, who serenaded the crowd with offerings from his South African Music Award (SAMA23) winning album “iKhambi”.

ODMedia_IJE_ICC443The show was laced together by Metro FM’s ‘The Urban Jazz Experience’ host, Nothemba Madumo and ‘The Art of Sunday’ on Kaya FM presenter, Brenda Sisane who hosted the event.

While the lights may have dimmed, the stage emptied, the instruments packed away and the voices quiet, the 2017 International Jazz Extravaganza will live on in the hearts of jazz lovers for many years to come.

The second IJE is brought to you by its presenting partners, the National Department of Arts & Culture, the KZN Provincial Department of Arts and Culture and Durban Tourism; associate partner, Standard Bank Personal and Business Banking and official airline carrier, SAA. Media partners for the IJE are Mzansi Magic Music, Kaya FM and East Coast Radio and their official suppliers are Aha Hotels & Lodges  and SMG-Durban BMW.

 Website: https://www.ije.co.za/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/IJExtravaganza

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/int_jazz_extravaganza/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/InternationalJazzExtravaganzaSA/

Hashtag: #IJE2017

Drama for Life Creative Research Hub goes mobile at the National Arts Festival 2017

All fired up and ready to go! It’s all systems go for Drama for Life as they make their way to the National Arts Festival, the biggest annual celebration of the arts on the African continent, to be held in Grahamstown from 29 June – 9 July 2017.

The Drama for Life Creative Research Hub, in partnership with the National Arts Festival, will premiere a variety of original, new performances for children, families and older youth, experiential workshops for artists and community-practitioners; and the highly competitive REMIX Laboratory programme for selected community-based theatre practitioners from across South Africa.

This year, the Drama for Life Creative Research Hub will be launching its Arts in Conversation series of critical conversations in partnership with THINK!FEST.  Facilitated by expert Applied Arts Facilitators, these conversations seek to explore the construction of new performance terrains, methods and content in the South African landscape. Be prepared for engaged, active dialogues that will seek to disrupt the current status quo!

In addition to its home base at the newly renovated Public Library, the Drama for Life Creative Research Hub will reach out to children and youth across the Makana Municipality with applied arts workshops at Nompumelelo Hall and NELM.

The Drama for Life Creative Research Hub, in partnership with the National Arts Festival will include:

Mainane! – a magical journey, a rite of passage, about a group of children who overcome seemingly insurmountable struggles in a land of on-going strife, anguish and outright conflict. This coming of age story, set against the backdrop of a contemporary South Africa, brings together a diverse group of young people who summon the courage to face extraordinary hardships against all odds. It is the telling of a story of heroism embedded in vulnerability, a collective humanity and hope.  Mainane! is directed by Warren Nebe and presented by Drama for Life Theatre Company in partnership with Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project.

Mainane! will show at the Library Hall daily from 3-8 July at 16h00. The performance on 7 July will be followed by a post-show discussion.

Insta-Grammar – a heart-wrenching story about speaking and keeping love in the whirlwind of the Instagram and SnapChat era. Insta-Grammar is directed by Hamish Neill in collaboration with the Drama for Life Theatre Company. Insta-Grammar is aimed at 15+ year old and is presented by Drama for Life Theatre Company in partnership with Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project.

Insta-Grammar will be performed daily at the Library Hall at 10h00 from 3-8 July with a post-show discussion following the 10h00 show on 4 July.

Space Rocks – a new play aimed at audiences between the ages of 5 and 8 years old. It combines science, technology and mythology to create an innovative and playful theatrical experience about early childhood development and emotional growth. In the story, each planet has a gift and a lesson for Jojo and Jinx to help defeat Void and Vortex, who lurk on the edges of the galaxy. Will JoJo overcome his fear of the dark? Will his big sister let him take the controls? With a blend of mythology and science, this play is about how children learn through play, and find hidden strength within as they take their first steps towards independence. This beautifully crafted play is written by Tamara Schulz and directed by Craig Morris.

Space Rocks shows daily from 3-8 July at 13h00, a post-show discussion will be held after the 13h00 performance on 6 July.

Kasi Stories: Stories not Often Told – the story of Xola and Thabo’s friendship. We see the two young men at different stages of their lives, as the boys move further apart by their shifting socio-economic status, but held together by their shared reality of failed fatherhood which both holds their friendship together and threatens to tear it apart. Kasi Stories asks pertinent questions about the failure of the father figure in the South African context. Kasi Stories: Stories not Often Told is directed by Benjamin Bell and features Lebogang Mphahlele and Thulani Mtsweni.

Kasi Stories: Stories not Often Told will show daily at 18h00 from 3-8 July. A post-production discussion will be held after the 18h00 performance on 6 July.

REMIX Laboratory

Drama for Life has partnered with the 2017 National Arts Festival, under the directorship of Mr Ashraf Johaardien, to re-develop and grow the REMIX Laboratory. The REMIX Laboratory offers community-based artists an opportunity to experience the Festival ‘In Residence’ under the guided mentorship and leadership of Drama for Life professionals.  Selected participants can expect a rigorous training in theatre-making and cultural leadership, a rich and varied programme of theatre and the visual arts, and an opportunity to network and grow meaningful, sustainable partnerships. The trainees will be provided with the University of the Witwatersrand accredited short course trainings at Nombulelo Hall. The REMIX Laboratory is directed by Munyaradzi Chatikobo with teaching by Caryn Green, Warren Nebe, Hamish Neill, Zanele Madiba and the Drama for Life Theatre Company.

The following two accredited short courses will be offered in 2017:

The New Consciousness in Cultural Leadership short course will introduce principles and practices of cultural leadership and management for youth in community-based applied arts, arts education and/or public art organisations.

This short course will be offered at the Nombulelo Hall from 3-5 July.

The Stories of Identities short course will focus on using Applied Drama and Theatre as a story-processing, collaborative theatre-making tool that can be used to locate and unpack new stories of identity.

This short course will offered at the Nombulelo Hall from 6-8 July.

Arts in Conversation

The Drama for Life Creative Research Hub will be hosting a series of Arts in Conversations for National Arts Festival THINK!FEST. These conversations, curated by Warren Nebe, will draw together emerging thought leaders and artists to grapple with complex questions about re-imagining the South African arts and culture landscape.  The topics include:

  • New Leadership New Consciousness: Towards an out the box collaborative performing arts-making culture
  • New Relationships New Society: Re-thinking arts and culture for purposes of social transformation and healing
  • New Visions New Spaces: Re-imagining performance in the South African landscape

All sessions are free and be will be held at the Library Hall.

Community Engagement workshops

The aim of this programme is to provide meaningful, playful and informative workshops and performances for children, youth and adults. All the offerings are free and happen daily. Workshops will include Jiggles and Journeys – Exploring Travel: This workshop series facilitated by Sue Hall is intended for 4-6 year olds. Dance it Out – Find your Jive!: This workshop facilitated by Bonginkosi Mnisi is intended for 12-16 year olds. Spot the Difference: This workshop, facilitated by Hamish Neill will address basic theatre elements and the use of metaphor in performance for youth and artists. The Reflective Practitioner: This workshop will look at creating reflective tools for facilitators/teachers/practitioners to understand why reflective practice is critical to their work and explore ways in which they develop reflective practice. The Soul’s Code: A Drama Therapy WorkshopThis workshop facilitated by Drama Therapist Warren Nebe will give arts practitioners time to reflect, re-imagine, restore through a symbolic reflective process.

For further information visit the Drama for Life Creative Research Hub at the Library Hall or see the National Arts Festival programme.

About Drama for Life

Drama for Life, based at the University of the Witwatersrand, is an arts centre for social transformation and healing. It is dedicated to transforming arts, culture and heritage research, education and practice in Africa. Our commitment toward South Africa is found in our academic, short course and community engagement programmes and projects throughout the country. This commitment is embedded in a belief that the performing arts have the ability to give voice, respect and dignity to all who live in our country. The arts enable us to imagine new narratives and to experience a new consciousness.

Submit Your Music Tour Funding Application To Concerts SA Today

Planning a music tour but unsure how to fund it? Apply to Concerts SA’s Music Mobility Fund which will select new projects to support in July

Applications Deadline: Sunday 23rd July 2017

This tour funding mechanism offers opportunities for professional South African musicians to undertake live music tours in South Africa as well as other Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries. The fund provides support toward live music performances, collaborations and performance-based workshops.

Following the success of the six previous rounds of funding, applications are now open for the second iteration of Music Mobility Fund disbursements this year. The deadline for submissions is Sunday 23rd July 2017, and tours should take place between mid-August 2017 and 25th February 2018.

The Fund is administered by Concerts SA, a joint South African/Norwegian project housed within the SAMRO Foundation. Working with musicians, promoters, venue owners and music sector stakeholders, the project aims to build a vibrant and viable live music circuit in southern Africa. It also seeks to develop an interest in and appreciation of live music by showcasing music performances and conducting workshops at schools.

Since it was initiated in 2013, the Music Mobility Fund has received over 700 applications and supported more than 130 tours with artists like Madala Kunene, Tu Nokwe, Andre Petersen, Wendy Oldfield, Mark Fransman and Msaki.

Msaki says: “Having Concerts SA as a partner, collaborator and advisor through the Mobility Fund has been powerful and freeing. Every independent musician knows that hitting the road is a challenge but when you have a 10-piece band, challenge might not be the most accurate word. Concerts SA gave me the power of logistical problem solving. And since performing at Bushfire in Swaziland as part of our tour, other festivals have booked us after seeing us there. A watershed career changing opportunity, made possible by the Music Mobility Fund.”


More than 600 musicians have successfully toured across the 9 South African provinces as well as 10 countries in southern Africa (Botswana, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Swaziland, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia, Namibia and Madagascar), playing over 700 shows to around 50 000 people, spanning genres from jazz to indigenous music, from folk to hip-hop to kwaito.

Designed to help musicians, music industry professionals and organisations build on already established domestic success and develop connections, markets and audiences for their work, the fund provides support towards travel and transportation, as well as per diems, material costs (hiring of backline and sound equipment), accommodation, artwork design, travel insurance and visas.

Musician, composer and UCT researcher Cara Stacey, leader of the Afrikan Freedom Principle project, says: “The Concerts SA Mobility Fund allowed for a wild and creative idea to be realised. It helped myself, Mandla Mlangeni, and Matchume Zango (three musicians in three cities) to come together to create new music and then helped us to share this with transnational audiences. It is a priceless opportunity and so important in facilitating the development of creative work but also the creative minds of both musicians and audience members.”


Among the projects that may be financed are tours and concerts, including regional, national or provincial tours, as well as performances at festivals and showcases. The Music Mobility Fund also funds artistic collaborations with merit among musicians based in different provinces of South Africa or SADC countries. Each project must be between four days and three months in duration.

Qhawekazi Giyose and Gugulethu Duma, who workshopped with legendary Madosini as part of their live performance project, comment: “The Mobility Fund helped us actualize a project we have been conceptualizing for four years. It opened up doors for collaborations with artists and spaces we have been wanting to work with, and also motivated us to keep momentum going in our musical endeavours.”


National Projects

Artists from all provinces are invited to apply for national projects taking place in any South African province(s). The bulk of the activities must take place outside the province where the artist is based. The tour schedule must include one activity in either Gauteng, the Western Cape or KwaZulu-Natal. Applicants may request up to R30,000.

Regional Projects

Regional projects must take place in one or more of the following SADC countries: Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe. While activities in South Africa may be included as part of regional projects, the bulk of the activities must take place outside of South Africa. Applicants will need to conduct their own research and have identified and communicated with a potential partner or host. The partner may be an individual or organisation and must be an established musician or music professional, and must be based in the SADC country (or countries) where the project will take place. Applicants may request up to R45,000.

Application process

Applicants should read the Call for Proposals and complete the Application Form in English, and submit it by Sunday 23rd July 2017, including the following mandatory documents: legal documentation of the applicant (ID/passport copy for individuals and organisation representatives; company registration documents); track record (media coverage, website links, evidence of recognition awards, public appearances or residencies, CV, biography, etc.); budget of the project (including projected income and expenditure); and a calendar of activities with tour schedule. SADC regional projects must include a letter from the local host confirming their support and involvement.

Enquiries and applications should be submitted by email to concertssa@samro.org.za, by fax to 086 500 7028 or by post to Concerts SA, c/o The SAMRO Foundation, 20 De Korte Street, 4th Floor SAMRO Place, Braamfontein, Johannesburg, 2001.

For more information, visit http://concertssa.co.za, follow @ConcertsSA on Twitter (www.twitter.com/ConcertsSA) or like Concerts SA on Facebook


Night In The Garden Presents Curated Nights | 30 June 2017

On the 30th of June 2017 at OPEN in Maboneng, Night In The Garden will be hosting their first intimate and collaborative edition to their NITG family called, Curated Nights. The addition of their newest exhibition to the NITG Stable, Curated Nights will be all about bringing two creative forces, one from the fashion industry and the other from the visual arts industry together to collaborate alongside Night In The Garden. This would still be a social exhibition, however it would be a more focused and curated evening, with all creatives involved working together to bring the social exhibition to life. Although the focus will be on how the two creative industries can interpret their vision together a few more creatives will be brought in to amplify the Night In The Garden Experience.

To help launch their first edition of Curated Nights, NITG has collaborated with the loved and respected Uniconz as well as the talented and creative Unkle Bats. Both of these creative forces have been making waves within our street culture and will be working together to bring their vision to life. The evening will also feature exciting elements that will be brought to guests by Lorenzo Plaatjies, Lawrence Symonds and the unique book store RHEST.

Jo-Brizzler will still be their media partner , working alongside Night In The Garden that will always keep to its original blue print of aiming to promote and support Johannesburg’s best up and coming fashion brands and visual artists yet keeping the exhibition refreshing, interactive and creative  space  which allows  the  artists to interact with their followers and network with a potentially new untapped market.

Tickets will be sold at the door for just R70 and for all the latest updates follow them on their social media platforms:

IG: nightinthegarden

TW: @NITG_Exhibition

FB: @NITGexhibition


#FeatureFriday | Meet Fine Jewellery Brand ANPA.

Meet the serial entrepreneurs making inroads into the global luxury market from a sleepy seaside village.

When South African music superstar Lira sought fine jewellery as unique as her music, she turned to local Cape Town design studio, ANPA, who specialize in hand-crafted fine jewellery designed to complement each client’s unique personality & style. The label is known within its niche market as the go-to brand for one-of a-kind statement pieces that redefine understated elegance and luxury.

In less than a decade, ANPA has evolved into a global player, attracting a loyal following among A-listers and the well-heeled set, including distinguished celebrities, diplomats, business executives and a perennial international tourist base predominantly from Germany, Switzerland, France, the UK and the US.

ANPA is owned and run by entrepreneurs Patrizia Litty & Andreas Betzold, who operate the business from two showrooms in Franschhoek & Kalk Bay respectively. The serial entrepreneurs have also made a name for themselves within the art world through their contemporary gallery, ODA. The large Franschhoek showroom hosts the design studio and displays both jewellery and art, while the Kalk Bay showroom houses the manufacturing workshop.

Read More

Paledi Segapo To Host 2nd Business Management Of Fashion Seminar

Founder and Creative Director of Palse SA, Paledi Segapo will once again host “The Business Management of Fashion Seminar” (BMOFS) on the 5th of August 2017 at the Reef Hotel in Johannesburg.

The seminar will be centered on imparting business and fashion advice to aspiring designers and entrepreneurs about the protocols of running a business in this highly competitive and fast growing industry.

Sunday Sun Image.JPG

Following the success of the seminar held in March this year, which featured guest speakers such as Jerry Mokgofe, Quiteria and Lesley Mofokeng, BMOFS promises to be bigger and better.

Celebrities known for cladding Palse include multi-award winning and platinum selling artists Donald, Kwesta, Prince Kaybee, Idols SA ‘s Proverb and actor Kay Sibiya. Now in its second running, BMOFS aligns with Segapo’s vision to mentor up and coming designers, providing them with a much needed platform and exposure within the industry.

Paledi has vast knowledge and experience in both fashion and corporate sector, having graduated from Unisa with a Master’s Degree in Business Leadership and dissertation on Gauteng’s Growth Strategies within the Fashion Enterprise.


Paledi Segapo is currently available for interviews.

Connect with Paledi Segapo
Twitter: @paledisegapo
Instagram: @paledisegapo

Connect with Palse
Twitter: @Palse_SA
Instagram: @Palse_SA

Basha Uhuru Freedom Fest, In Partnership With Nando’s And The Department Of Arts & Culture, Commemorates 41 Years Of The 1976 Soweto Uprisings & The 21st Anniversary Of The Constitution, 21 – 25 June 2017

On 16 June 1976, what started out as peaceful protest in the streets of Soweto by students standing up against an oppressive regime, ended with bloodshed and incarceration of young people at Number Four – what used to be Johannesburg’s nefarious prisons, which is presently known as Constitution Hill, a national heritage site. 41 years later, Constitution Hill, in partnership with Nando’s and the Department of Arts & Culture, commemorates the spirit of the students of 1976 with the annual Basha Uhuru Freedom Fest.

The festival is a celebration and expression of artistic wealth among the youth of South Africa. As we approach the 21st Anniversary of the signing of the constitution, it is important that we reflect on this key milestone in the history of South Africa, how far we have come as a nation and most importantly where we are.

Now in its 5th year, the Basha Uhuru Freedom Fest is focused on empowering youth in creative industries by affording them platforms for freedom of artistic expression. The event will feature a 5 day programme which entails a contemporary group art exhibition titled Expressions of Freedom; Conversations of Freedom creative talks, and Visions of Freedom is a film screenings sponsored by the Gauteng Film Commission. All these activities lead up to main attraction of the festival which is the Sounds of Freedom music concert featuring a diverse line-up of both emerging and established musical talent from across the country. The Locrate Family Picnic will be a fusion of food, fashion, and craft – providing trading opportunities for small businesses and micro-sized enterprises.

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National Arts Festival 2017 Theatre Programme Excavates, Navigates And Redefines | #NAF17

The National Arts Festival’s theatre programme is “a laboratory of work that re-imagines history, exhumes ghosts and questions our future in a way that unsettles and inspires”, according to Executive Producer, Ashraf Johaardien.

Spearheading this vision is 2017 Standard Bank Young Artist for Theatre, Monageng ‘Vice’ Motshabi, whose work ANKOBIA unfolds in the future land of Pelodikgadile. In that land it is forbidden to remember a time before the new state, and the ‘joy machine’ keeps people grinning with pleasure and utterly obedient. Co-written by Motshabi and Omphile Molusi, the play touches on unresolved issues and the silencing of protest – the machine that is state and the traps that we fall into when power is unchecked. Motshabi says all his work “draws on the essence of the continent”. The play, which derives its name from Ghanaian word ankobia (meaning ‘go back and get it’), features Momo Matsunyane, Katlego Letsholonyana and Billy Langa. ANKOBIA will be performed in Grahamstown on 7, 8 and 9 July.

Nadia Davids digs up history in her play WHAT REMAINS – a fusion of text, dance and movement about the unexpected uncovering of a slave burial ground in Cape Town. Based on an actual event, the archaeological dig leads to a reckoning of untold histories for the citizens, archaeologists and property developers involved. And so the layers of history and memory emerge. Davids’ work has previously explored forced removal and memory and this one is no different. Of Cape Town David’s says, “Its an uncanny place, the past and the present are always entangled, the landscape seems to move constantly between the invitation to remember and the demand to forget and that remembering and forgetting has always been racially coded.” She says, “It’s the sort of place that invites multiple tellings precisely because its inhabitants experience the city so differently.” Jay Pather directs, choreographs and sets the sceneography of the piece with performers Denise Newman, Faniswa Yisa and Shaun Oelf bringing the story to life on 29 and 30 June and 1 July.

After a seventeen year break from working together, performer Rehane Abrahams and Mothertongue co-founder and director, Sara Matchett are bringing their individual work into unison for a study on the body politic in WOMB OF FIRE. The piece uses a mythical, non-Western framework to examine the performing female body as a site of disruption. An all-woman theatre collective, the Mothertongue Project has drawn on their experience of helping countless women tell their stories and become empowered within their bodies and communities. Audiences can catch this production on 4, 5 and 6 July.

In a time where women’s safety and identity remain squarely on the South African agenda, another piece that interrogates the representation of women in contemporary society is Zimkitha Kumbaca’s CONFESSIONS OF A BLACKLISTED WOMAN: SHE BELLOWS. First written by her in 2011, Kumbaca now directs the piece at this year’s National Arts Festival, close to her original home of King Williams Town in the Eastern Cape. A departure from her best-known role as Nontle Sanqu, in the e.tv drama series Matatiele, this work has been presented to critical acclaim at the South African State Theatre, Pop Art Theatre, the Windybrow Theatre, the Joburg Theatre and, most recently, at the Soweto Theatre. Festival audiences can see it on 4, 5 and 6 July.

The deeply personal and complex relationships women have with their families and their selves are excavated in Jennie Reznek’s (Magnet Theatre) one-woman show, I TURNED AWAY AND SHE WAS GONE. Directed by Mark Fleishman, the show poetically explores the passage and cycles of life of three generations of women – mother, daughter, grandmother – and the relationship we all have with our past, present and future selves. Nominated for four Fleur du Cap and two Naledi awards, the show will be performed on 7 and 8 July.

Love and family cross boundaries and challenge gender stereoytpes in the acclaimed multi-lingual NewFoundLand (BUITE LAND) by Neil Coppen. An exploration of the deepest threads that invisibly exist between religion and science, medicine and faith, memory and forgetting, Kopano Maroga’s performance at the recent KKNK won him a Best Supporting Actor Kanna Award and the play took home the Best Debut Production award. The cast includes Jacques Bessenger, Kopano Maroga, Elize Cawood and Ntombi Gasa among others, who will perform the piece on 7, 8 and 9 July

Family themes continue through Lara Bye’s formidable treatment of the early nineties book The Smell of Apples by Mark Behr. DIE REUK VAN APPELS retells the riveting tale of a boy’s end of innocence – both personally and in the context of country. Gideon Lombard’s Kanna Awardwinning performance (Best Actor 2017) is not to be missed in this production by The South African State Theatre and Theatrerocket. Catch it on 2, 3, 4, 5 and 8 July

Bringing international issues into line with our own, THE CROWS PLUCKED AT YOUR SINEWS is a one woman show from the UK with Aisha Mohammed, featuring live music from Abdulkader Saadoun.  Directed by Hassan Mahamadille, the story unfolds through the unearthing of real events in history, both recent and long gone, in a piece that explores integration and tolerance through an evocative narrative. The production will show in Grahamstown from 5-8 July.

The National Arts Festival and Drama for Life will present four new South African works at the Festival. INSTA-GRAMMAR! is a heart-wrenching story about speaking and keeping love in the whirlwind Instagram and SnapChat era. KASI STORIES: STORIES NOT OFTEN TOLD examines the failure of the father figure in South Africa through the tensions of a friendship across economic divides.

MAIMANE! a coming of age story, set against the backdrop of a contemporary South Africa, brings together a diverse group of young people who summon the courage to face extraordinary hardships against all odds. SPACE ROCKS, written by Tamara Schulz and directed by Craig Morris is aimed at young audiences (4-8 years old). All the Drama for Life shows run between 3 and 8 July.


A real treat for theatre lovers will be a live link up to the National Theatre in the UK for the staging of AMADEUS and TWELFTH NIGHT. National Theatre Live launched in June 2009 with a broadcast of the National Theatre production of Phèdre with Helen Mirren. They have since broadcast more than forty other productions live, from both the National Theatre and other theatres in the UK. This global viewing experience will take place on 5 July at 15:00 (TWELFTH NIGHT) and 19:00 (AMADEUS).


A long-standing partner of the National Art’s Festival, the French Institute of South Africa (IFAS) will again bring French-inspired works to the programme. The ‘enfant terrible’ of French poetry, Arthur Rimbaud, will be brought to life in THE ALCHEMY OF WORDS. The play focuses on Rimbaud’s short-lived poetry career and the profound impact it had on the poetry of the 1800’s, going on to inspire artists such as André Breton, Dylan Thomas, Jack Kerouac, Bob Dylan, Patti Smith and Jim Morrison. See it 1,2 and 3 July).

Also made possible with the support of the French Institute South Africa (IFAS) and Alliance Française Southern Africa, is The Fortune Cookie Company’s TARTUFFE. Directed by former Standard Bank Young Artist Award winner (2006), Sylvaine Strike, the cast heaves with theatre heavyweights and fresh talent from Neil McCarthy and Craig Morris to Khutjo Green and Camilla Waldman.

The piece tells the story of destructive influence and power through Moliere’s traditional satire but with Strike’s fresh vision and a pre-war epoch, 1930s treatment. Having toured in Cape Town and Johannesburg, festival-goers will be treated to TARTUFFE’s Eastern Cape premier on 29, 30 June and 1 July.


Says National Arts Festival Executive Producer, Ashraf Johaardien, “Theatre addicts know that the National Arts Festival’s Arena is a fast-fix of edgy new work from some of the artists who are shaping a new generation of theatre.” The Arena is composed of productions that have won either a Standard Bank Ovations Award on the National Arts Festival Fringe or an international award at one of the National Arts Festival’s partner festivals.  With support from Business and Arts South Africa, this year’s Arena is a collection of spellbinding, thought-provoking pieces.

The fast-paced, decisive REPARATION is written, directed and designed by Ameera Conrad and presented by Hungry Minds Productions. “An all local-content theatre production for the new age theatre goer” it’s a dark comedy that explores the ‘final reparation’ in South African politics on 30 June, 1 and 2 July.

Awarded the Dioraphte ‘Best of Amsterdam Fringe 2016’ award, MACHO MACHO is an ironic exploration of masculinity through a physical ‘dance’ between two men who are questioning the objectified world they are being subjected to….what is behind those Calvin Klein sixpacks? Brought to the Festival by the World Fringe Alliance, audiences can see it on 3, 4, 6 and 7 July

Robaby Productions’ KID CASINO sees the irrepressible Roberto Pombo pair up with Joni Barnard in a play about the underbelly of casino addiction as two young children caper through the casino whilst their Mother stays glued to the slot machines. Showing on 6, 7, 8 and 9 July.

The much-anticipated new work of 2016 Standard Bank Young Artist for Theatre 2016 and recent Naledi Award winner, Jade Bowers’  BLACK features Ameera Patel in Penny Youngleson’s adaptation of CA Davids’ Blacks of Cape Town. The narrative, in split chapter form, shifts between past and present – from New Jersey where lead character Zara Black finds herself alone and displaced, to South Africa of the past and present- as she grapples with constructing a history for herself and her family from fragmented recollections and family lore. Performances take place on 29 and 30 June, 1 and 2 July.

Greg Homann, a member of the artistic committee’s theatre sub-committee (along with Lara Bye, Mwenya Kabwe and Warona Seane) says “South Africa’s longstanding theatre tradition of creating new work that disrupts, challenges, and questions is alive and well.” Evident in the subject matter, the ideas and the experimentation that comes with the 2017 Festival programme, artists are not just responding to the turmoil of a world facing any number of possible futures and slippery slopes, they are rewiring imaginations and outcomes in bold remixes that search and sweat for answers.

The National Arts Festival’s programme is online and available for booking on the site www.nationalartsfestival.co.za


The National Arts Festival is grateful to: the Department of Arts and Culture, Eastern Cape Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture and the Office of the Premier, and Standard Bank of South Africa. Media partners include MNET and City Press.


Now in its 43rd year, the National Arts Festival is the largest and longest-running celebration of the arts on the African content. It is held annually in the small university city of Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape, 130km from Port Elizabeth.

The programme comprises drama, dance, physical theatre, comedy, opera, music, jazz, visual art exhibitions, film, student theatre, street theatre, lectures, craft fair, workshops, as well as a children’s arts festival.


The Artistic Committee, comprising experts in various disciplines, selects the content of the Main programme. Work from both within and outside South Africa is considered, with the following criteria in mind: the artistic merits of any submission; the creation of a varied and balanced programme; and the costs involved.