The National Arts Festival held annually in Grahamstown, Eastern Cape, celebrates 40 years of excellent existence in 2014. This being the second largest festival in the world, it’s a big deal. There are lots of artistic treats to look forward to on the 11 days of amazing – happening from July 3 – 13.
The fest will commemorate its 4 decade milestone with a theme that traces heritage and legacies. One of its legacies is the Standard Bank Young Artist Award which has awarded artistic excellence to the country’s emerging talents over the last 30 years. This has included the flair of Sibongile Khumalo; Willaim Kentridge; Dada Masilo and Paul Mpumelelo Grootboom to name a few.
This year’s winners of the Standard Bank Young Artist Award are: Greg Homann (Theatre); Njabulo Madlala (Music); Nicola Elliot (Dance); Kyle Shepard (Jazz); Hassan and Husain Essop (visual art); Donna Kukama (Performance Art) and Jahmil XT Qubeka (Film).
Here’s a taste of what you can expect:
CARGO: PRECIOUS is a unique collaboration between four Standard Bank Young Artists. Directed by Sylvaine Strike (theatre 2006) and choreographed by PJ Sabbagha (dance 2005), the piece is an imagined account of the ocean crossing undertaken by Saartjie Baartman and features Fana Tshabalala (dance 2013) with music by Concord Nkabinde (jazz 2006). Referring to the themes of ‘homecoming’ and African legacies Strike recalls,” After two centuries Saartjie Baartman’s remains were returned to her country of birth. The horrific stories of scientific experiments remain basically unanswered but what is undoubted, is that she was stared at, stripped, painted, worshipped and ridiculed.”