Category: Contemporary dance

Kaboom, in your face: Remembering ‘Fire Starter’

WHEN YOU HOLD a match to something flammable, you will get an explosion. But it need not be a destructive one: Pantsula dancer Ayanda Nondlwana aka “Fire Starter” or “Ace” was that kind of flammable, in the dance sphere. All the people who touched his life enabled him […]

Our minister, left feeling cold

ALONGSIDE AN ALL-ABIDING fear of social interaction on every conceivable level, the coronavirus pandemic has brought us – particularly us in the arts industries – dire concerns about the very income that keeps body and soul together. On 15 January 2021, South Africa’s current minister of sports, arts […]

A cupboard full of ideology

DANCE REVIEW: THEMBA MBULI’S MANMADE. WHAT IS AN item of clothing in this world? A swatch of fabric stitched and cut to fit a body? A thing to simply cover your nakedness? A repository of fashion values? Or a thing to define you in a specific way, fraught […]

Don’t mess with Mamela

DANCE REVIEW: PEST CONTROL. YOU DO NOT need to know the dirty politics of the arts in contemporary South Africa in order to access the angry new dance missile which Mamela Nyamza launches at this year’s National Arts Festival. You do not need to know the specifics of […]

True selves, dervishes and calabashes

DANCE REVIEW: AMAWETHU. THE STRATA OF South Africa choreography run rich and deep and are about education and values as much they are about tradition and magnificence. We have in this country a plentiful culture of dance companies which have stretched their members to take authority on what […]

The value Sylvia brings

BOOK REVIEW: TRANCEFORMATIONS AND TRANSFORMATIONS BY SYLVIA GLASSER IT WAS A work that would shake everything from the parameters of dance in South Africa to the way in which contemporary black dancers confronted their medium. Indeed, dance ethnographer, choreographer and academic Sylvia Glasser’s watershed piece Tranceformations that evolved […]