‘Forget everything you were taught about poetry’ – Afurakan

This week, Word N Sound, The Market Theatre and The National Lottery will launch the first ever Spoken Freedom Festival. We caught up with Word N Sound founder, Thabiso Afurakan Mohare, to find out more.

1. What is the Spoken Freedom Festival? How did it come about?
The 1st Annual Spoken Freedom Festival is an exciting and energetic showcase of the best youth Spoken Word voices in South Africa. Through words, music and visuals, the four day experience will capture audiences imaginations with stories of being young woven with the challenges and the victories of living in a free South Africa 20 years of on. The festival is a joint initiative by The Word N Sound Live Literature Company and The Market Theatre and supported by the National Lottery Foundation.

2. How did Word N Sound decide on the line up?
It was very difficult as there are so many new and exciting voices on the spoken word scene. Ultimately we looked at experience, relevance in the current scene and just general performance. We also tried to achieve a balance between poets who have been active for more than 5 years and the new rising stars.

3. What does 20 years of spoken freedom mean for you as an artist?
It’s a time to reflect and asked if art has had the kind of impact on South Africa now as it did during the struggle days? Where will art take our country and what is it’s central role?

4. Which day are you most looking forward to and why?
The whole festival. I have to say that …LOL!

5. Please gives us 3 reasons why one should attend this Festival, especially if they aren’t familiar with the current SA poetry scene?
A) Forget everything you were taught about poetry in High School. This will be a spiritual experience.
B) You will laugh, cry, cheer and totally get inspired. Poetry speaks to the human condition and it will be impossible for any one person to experience the festival without something inside them changing forever.
C) Have you seen what poets do on stage now? That’s all I’m saying …

Get the full Line Up here


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