Bookings open on Monday, 4 May for South Africa’s premier arts festival, which runs from 2 to 12 July in Grahamstown.
Aiming to satisfy, provoke and thrill both the discerning and the curious, this year’s National Arts Festival line-up showcases the best of what South Africa’s artists have to offer, as well as an unmissable selection of international acts.
Bookings for the Festival – which runs from 2 to 12 July in Grahamstown – open on Monday, 4 May.
“The 2015 programme at the National Arts Festival will be a barometer that measures the ways in which South African artists are responding to the complexities and accomplishments of our society,” says Ismail Mahomed, the Festival’s Artistic Director. “From thought-provoking work by a younger generation of artists to soul-stirring celebrations of South African arts and cultural legends, all complemented by acclaimed performances by international artists, this year’s programme will cater for wide and diverse audiences.”
This year’s highlights include:
- Irish comic Dylan Moran – with an extra show already added due to the overwhelming response the “Black Books” star is likely to receive in Grahamstown.
- World premieres of Craig Higginson’s “The Imagined Land”, two Pieter-Dirk Uys productions: “African Times” and “The Echo of a Noise”, and the Thambo Production of “Masote’s Dream”.
- Ray Phiri, rocking the Monument for one night only.
- Leading Zimbabwean contemporary dance company Tumbuka performing “Portrait of Myself as my Father” and the premiere of Standard Bank Young Artist Award winner Luyanda Sidiya’s “SIVA (seven)”.
- A stronger-than-ever music line-up: Beatenburg, MiCasa, Shortstraw, Thandiswa Mazwai and Standard Bank Young Artist award winner Nduduzo Makhathini.
- Leslie Lewis in “Miracle in Rwanda”, the incredible story of Rwandan genocide survivor Immaculée Ilibagiza.
- Ibsen’s “The Doll’s House” adapted by Standard Bank Young Artist Award winner for Theatre, Christiaan Olwagen.
The Gala and Symphony concerts will be presented by the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra (under Richard Cock), while Cape Town City Ballet will celebrate its 20th anniversary with two works by John Neumeier – “Spring and Fall” and “Le Sacre”.
As South Africa’s largest platform of artistic debate and expression, the Festival Fringe is bursting with a bumper line-up of more than 400 productions, including 56 comedy productions, 41 physical theatre productions, seven illusionists, and 34 dance shows.
There’s also a fascinating visual art programme; performance art; the Standard Bank Jazz Festival (Carlo Mombelli, Pops Mohamed, Kesivan Naidoo, Bokani Dyer, and others); Family Fare, which will see ASSITEJ SA collaborate with companies from Holland and Denmark; the Film Festival, showcasing the work of Afrikaans director Jans Rautenbach; and Think!Fest, which will bring together South Africa’s thought leaders to grapple with issues of self-expression and freedom.
The full 2015 Festival website also goes live on 4 May, and visitors can browse, plan and book their Festival experience all in one place. The dedicated ticketing system is both efficient and secure. See www.nationalartsfestival.co.za for the full programme and booking forms.
Printed programmes will be available from selected Exclusive Books and Standard Bank branches towards the middle of May.
Author: Gilly Hemphill
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