Tag Archives: poetry

WNS Fest: 29 Poets| 5 Days| 2 Cities

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The South African poetry landscape is set to be ignited once again as the Word N Sound International Youth Poetry Festival comes to Johannesburg and Cape-town from the 3rd to the 8th of October 2014.

 

The Word N Sound Live Literature Company, in partnership with The Soweto Theatre and British Council Connect ZA, present the 4th annual Word N Sound International Youth Poetry & Live Music Festival. Continuing in the tradition that began last year, the Festival moves between Cape Town and Johannesburg with workshops and performances by local and international poets.

The Soweto Theatre marquee of the Festival will be lit by bright names such as three-time US slam champion Buddy Wakefield; one of SA’s most pre-eminent poets, Lebo Mashile; Spirit of London Awards ambassador & Gay rights activist, Dean Atta from the UK; celebrated poet and arts entrepreneur TJ Dema (Botswana), winner of the first national edition of Slam for Your Life at the National Arts Festival and South Africa’s first National Slam champion, Koleka Putuma, and hailing from Zimbabwe, poet, comedian and MC, Andrew Manyika.

A new Open Mic Champion will be crowned in a breath-taking finale of the the yearlong spoken word development initiative, The Word N Sound Open Mic Poetry League. Bafentse Ntlokoa, Nkosinathi Gaar, Zewande BK Bhengu, Carlos NoLIFE Ncube, Xabiso Vili, and Thando Bhuthelezi will be vying for the coveted King/Queen of the Mic title, which for the first time in its four year history has six (and not 5) contenders.

Top6

“We are thrilled to partner again with the Word N Sound Spoken Word festival. Our UK element, Dean Atta joins an already impressive lineup of South African spoken word talent. Through a project like the British Council Connect ZA, we are able to continue to develop cultural understanding between South Africa and the UK,” Tom Porter, British Council Connect ZA programme manager.

The jam packed festival is scheduled as follows:

Saturday | 4 October |12:00 – 19:00 |Soweto Theatre | R50
Open Mic Slam Finale: After eight months of intense competition in the Word N Sound Open Mic Poetry League, 6 of Gauteng’s most exciting emerging spoken word talent, will vie for the coveted 2014 Word N Sound Open Mic Champion title. The top six contenders for this year are Carlos “NoLIFE” Ncube, Zewande BK Bengu, Bafentse Ntlokoa, Nkosinathi Gaar, Thando Buthelezi and Xabiso Vili.

The second half of this day will also feature “A Live Literature Company” a multimedia performance by the Word N Sound company members who balance the difficult task of balancing being arts entrepreneurs and renowned poets. The 2 hour production features Afurakan, Mutle Mothibe, Andrew Manyika (Zimbabwe), Conelius Jones, Mandi Poefficient Vundla, Masai Dabula, Mutinta Bbenkele, Elysium Garcia, Xongani Maluleka, Bonga Ndziweni; Lwazi Mthembu, Mpho Khosi and hosted by literary critic and Poet Ayob Vania.

TheCo

Sunday | 5 October |15:00 – 19:00 |Soweto Theatre | R50
Poetry Is: Showcase performances by local and international poets featuring Lebo Mashile, Buddy Wakefield (US), Dean Atta (UK), TJ Dema (Botswana), Andrew Manyika (Zimbabwe), Makhosazana Xaba and Koleka Putuma.

Tuesday | 7 October |15:00 – 17:00 |Amazink, Stellenbosch | Free
Workshops Day: Facilitated by Dean Atta and Adrian Van Wyk TJ Dema and featuring local poets and literature practitioners. The workshop sessions will focus on Poetry As Social Conscious as a central theme.

Tuesday | 7 October |19:00 – 23:00 |Play Bar |Goodwood | R30
Poetry Is: Showcase performances by local and international poets featuring Dean Atta (UK), Afurakan, Adrian Different and Koleka Putuma.

Wednesday | 8 October | 19:00 | Lighthouse on 7th | Free
Poetry Corner: Returning to Johannesburg to wrap the festival, is an event that will feature a brief open mic followed by DJs and that will mark the end of the festival.

The 4th Annual Word N Sound International Youth Poetry + Live Music Festival is brought to you in partnership with: Soweto Theatre and British Council Connect ZA and forms part of the part of SA-UK Seasons 2014 & 2015 which is a partnership between the Department of Arts & Culture, South Africa and the British Council.

Tickets will be available at The Soweto Theatre Box Office and through Computicket. For more information, please visit www.wordnsound.wordpress.com and www.sowetotheatre.com.

Check out the official Facebook event page.

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Luka Lesson drops a new video

“Celebrate The Storm” from Australian Spoken Word and Hip Hop Artist, Luka Lesson’s latest album EXIT is out! The video features the Nahko Bear (USA) from Nahko and Medicine for the People – fresh from tours with Xavier Rudd, Michael Franti and SOJA.

“This video is by far my best yet, and Nahko and I hope it touches you in a way that makes you believe in your strength and power as you struggle and push through the hard times,” says Luka.

Enjoy!! Share!! Dance!! and turn it UP!

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Talking Doorsteps: A new exciting video project

IMG_20140729_121626Masai Dabula, Mutle Mothibe, Deanna Rodger, Pippa Riddick and Thabiso Mohare

Today marks the beginning of an exciting new project in partnership with British Council Connect ZA and The Roundhouse in the UK.

The Talking Doorsteps project sees film-maker Pippa Riddick and poet Deanna Rodger working with 8 local poets to produce a series of poetry videos. Since 2011, groups of young creatives have worked with professional spoken work artists to create pop-up performances on doorsteps across London.

Talking Door Steps – Venetia

The eight participants are:
Xongani Maluleka
Ross Poet
Xabiso Vili
Thando Bella Khoza
Paballo Sethi
Mutinta Bbenkele
Apiwe Mjambane
Lucas Pilgrim Serei

We’re looking forward to seeing the videos you will produce in this week.

Gig guide
Poetry Corner

Wednesday | 30 July
Lighthouse on 7th, Melville
19:00
Free
Deanna Rodger and the 8 participants will be performing at our weekly free Open Mic sessions in Melvile.

Morning Live
Saturday | 2 August
SABC News and SABC 2
06:00 – 09:00
Catch interviews from Deanna Rodger and SA’s first National Slam Champion, Koleka Putuma.

Word N Sound Series
Saturday | 2 August
Market Theatre Laboratory
3 President Street, Newtown
12:00 – 18:00
R50 at the door
Deanna Rodger shares the Word N Sound stage with Koleka Putuma and 2013 Open Mic League Finalist, Mapule Mohulatsi. There is also SA’s toughest Open Mic Slam. Event page here.

DeannaRodgerFINAL

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SFYL: Become a slam poet in five steps

Gayle Danley offers five steps to being a slam poet — while being downright poetic in the process.
Lesson by Gayle Danley, animation by TED-Ed

With enough passion and practice, becoming a slam poet is within your reach. Explore a distant memory on paper, then read it out loud. Edit. Try reading it out loud again, and add your finishing touches.

Who is Gayle Danley?
Danley

Gayle was born in New York City, and at age 8 months, moved with her family to Atlanta, Georgia. She won her first public speaking contest in 7th grade and studied broadcast journalism at Howard University’s School of Communications where she graduated cum laude. After working as an assistant magazine editor for the National Rifle Association, she left Washington, DC to study Radio, Television and Film at Syracuse University, earning a Master’s Degree. It was not until after she finished school that she learned about Slam poetry. She embraced it almost immediately won the 1994 National Individual Slam Poet in Ashville, NC just months after being exposed to Slam poetry. In Heidelberg, Germany, she became the 1996 International Slam Poet Champion.

Feeling blessed to be able to share her talent and motivational words with audiences across the country, Gayle launched her one-woman show, “Brilliance,” touching thousands with her Slam Poetry workshops, lectures, performances and speeches. Gayle has published three books: “Naked,” “Soulfull—A Slam Poetry Study Guide,” and “Passionate—Poems You Can Feel.”

In addition to her motivational speaking and college performances, she has maintained a constant tour of elementary and secondary schools, helping students with traumatic experiences and teaching workshops on Slam poetry to all age groups. A feature story on Slam poetry was presented on the CBS show, 60 Minutes in 1999, which spotlighted her classroom work and riveting performance. Her keynote and lecture series fuses her poetry with the ability to touch her audience through real life experiences, leaving a lasting emotional message with her audience.

Gayle’s explosive style combines movement and emotion as she performs her magic on the audience, sweeping them up in her words as she addresses and explores contemporary issues.

Recent clients include: George Washington University, Massachusetts College of Art, University of Texas at San, Antonio, Clemson University, Alonzo Crim HS – Atlanta GA, South Brunswick HS – South Brunswick NJ, “Out of the Box” arts conference for artists and educators under the NYS Alliance in Binghamton NY, Jamestown Community College, University of Baltimore, Delaware Valley Institute for the Arts Teacher Conference, The Rome Art and Community Center artist spotlight and The Kitchen Theatre Presents Women in the Arts Event.

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Spoken Freedom Festival Line Up Announced

SpokenFreedomFest
In a rapidly changing socio-economic landscape, art takes the role of noting where we’ve been and, plots the path to where we’re going. Enter: The Spoken Freedom Festival. This Annual Festival is an exciting showcase of the best Spoken Word voices in South Africa, and takes place from the 3rd of July at the Market Theatre.

The Spoken Freedom Festival is first and foremost an exciting showcase. It provides both audiences and artists an opportunity to witness and partake of engaging artwork through the media of words, music and visuals. It’s a chance to collectively look at how far South Africa has come over the past two decades, and to position Spoken Word as a medium to both chronicle and shape the South African journey in the years to come.

This first edition of what will become an annual festival was born out of the shared visions of both the Word N Sound Live Literature Company, which seeks to provide an accessible platform for poets and poetry lovers to engage issues and enjoy art; and the Market Theatre, which provides a space for high quality theatrical productions to be staged and enjoyed.

“We are excited about partnering with the Market Theatre to host this ground-breaking festival. We look forward to seeing Spoken Word take a more prominent role in recording our collective journey as South Africans .” says Qhakaza Mthembu, Festival Director.

The Spoken Freedom Festival will feature screenings of pioneering poetry videos, an open mic slam and of course, performances by some of the leading lights among the spoken word voices in South Africa.

On Thursday 3 July, and Friday doors open at 19:30 with the Thursday shows featuring Conelius Jones, Makhafula Vilakazi & Napo Masheane; and the Friday show having performances by Vuyelwa Maluleke, Natalia Molebatsi and Multe Mothibe.

The weekend shows begin earlier with the Saturday show starting at 14:30 and featuring Andrew Manyika, Richard Quaz Roodt and Vangi Gantsho. The Final show will start at 15:00 and will see Tereska Muishond, Masai Dabula, Mandi Poeffecient Vundla and Modise Sekgothe taking to the stage.

Shows will be interspersed with an Open Mic Slam, Video screenings, and the four-
day programme will be hosted by the crown prince of Johannesburg Spoken Word- Afurakan Mohare.

The Spoken Freedom Festival will run from 3 – 6 July 2014 at the Barney Simon Theatre, Market Theatre Complex, Newtown. All shows cost R50 and the tickets will be available at the theatre’s Box Office.

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1st Annual Spoken Freedom Festival

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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 Spoken Freedom Festival also serves as a vivid snap shot of how Poetry and Spoken Word will shape South Africa in the next 20 years.

The Festival, hosted by Word N Sound Co-Founder, Afurakan Mohare, will run from 3 – 6 July 2014 at the Barney Simon Theatre, Market Theatre Complex, Newtown

Show Times
Thu: 19:30 – 22:00
Fri: 19:30 – 22:00
Sat: 14:30 – 20:30
Sun: 15:00 – 18:00

R50 at the door for each show.

Line up
Napo Masheane
Masai Dabula
Modise Sekgothe
Vuyelwa Maluleka
Quaz Roodt

Keep an eye on this blog, and our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts for more names announced this week.

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Word N Sound heads to the National Arts Festival

SFYL

We are quite excited to announce our brand new project in partnership with British Council Connect ZA. We will be taking the first ever Slam For Your Life National Poetry Slam to the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown in July.

Slam For Your Life is an innovative and competitive live literature format that is well placed to deliver a positive impact on emerging spoken word poets in South Africa. Through the theme “Life Is What You Write”, SFYL (Slam For Your Life) aims at creating a credible and nationally recognised youth poetry slam, opportunities for professional mentorship and network building through peer to peer interactions.

Four finalists from Gauteng, Western Cape, Eastern Cape and KwaZulu Natal will then travel to Grahamstown in July 2014 where the finals will be held and a national slam champion will be crowned.

How it works
Four poetry organisers/movements will be asked to nominate three poets from each of their province.
The organisers/movements will include;
• Slam Poetry Operation Team (Durban),
• Stellenbosch Literary Network (Stellenbosch),
• Ntsika Tyatya (Port Elizabeth)
• Word N Sound (Johannesburg).

Poetry videos of the 12 finalists will be promoted online and opened to a public vote. A poet with the most votes, from each city, will then qualify for the national finals.

The top 4 finalists will travel to Grahamstown to take part in a workshop with UK poet, Lemn Sissay. They will then compete in the national finals that will form part of the “Remix Lab” component of the National Arts festival 2014.

Watch this space for more info as Word N Sound and British Council Connect ZA partner up to bring you the first ever Slam For Your Life National Poetry Slam at the 2014 National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, Eastern Cape.

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9 young writers to look out for

To mark World Poetry Day (21 March), Word N Sound would like to salute the young writers who have gotten us excited about poetry and keep us motivated and inspired to keep pushing when things get tough.

Kurt Schröder, Modise Sekgothe, Zewande Bhengu, Roach Du Plessis, Apiwe Mjambane, Elysium Garcia, Bafentse Ntlokoa, Xongani Maluleka, Nkululeko Ngwenya you are amazing and we salute you.

Kurt Schröder

Kurt Ludwig Schröder is a Poet/Storyteller based in Pretoria, South Africa. He is currently completing his final year of undergrad studies in Human Movement Sciences at the University of Pretoria. While he studies and works in the field of sport, he has always enjoyed creative writing and drama.

Kurt is relatively new to performance poetry. He is a fresh young story-teller who started writing and performing poetry in early 2012. Most of his content is based on personal life-stories and experiences, and he strives to share art that will “re-sensitize” a numb and desensitized world. Kurt co-founded and co-directed a Pretoria-based poetry movement called “Spoken Sessions” which successfully hosted monthly poetry events from June/July 2012 until January 2014.

Kurt recently started working closely with Emote Record Company to record and produce his poems and stories. Kurt dreams of one day traveling the world to share his poetry.

Modise Sekgothe


Modise Sekgothe has been a writer for the past 6 years since 2007 having begun as an abstract Hip-Hop lyricist for the first 3 years. His exploration of Performance Poetry began in the year 2010 as a member of the UJ Poetry Society formally known as “Fore.Word Society”.

He has headlined and performed in all their major annual shows as an individual and in collaboration with a number of other prolific poets and performers. Aside from this, he has graced many stages throughout Johannesburg either in the form of slams, poetry competitions or open mike sessions. To mention a few, he performed as a guest performer in the regional semi-finals of the DFL lover And Another semi-finals in 2011. He has also recently performed as a representative of “Fore.Word Society” at the Izimbongi Poetry Festival 2012.

Aside from his experience as a Performance Poet, he has also quite recently explored other avenues of theatre through drama. He has thus far been part of three professional theatre productions under the UJ Drama Company. The first of these was “SA Shorts” which premiered at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival in 2012 and was also staged at the University of Johannesburg Theatre. Followed by “The Boy Who Fell From The Roof” which was part of the “ThatSoGay Festival” hosted by the UJ Drama Company also in 2012. Lastly, in the current year of 2013, he was part of “Equus”, the prolific play by Peter Shaffer, also under the UJ Drama Company.

Further explorations of both drama and poetry came in the form of a poetical or dramatic poetry independent-theatre production called “The Funeral”. “The Funeral” was conceptualised, directed and co-written by Simo Mpapa Majola including co-writers, Modise Sekgothe, Obakeng Makhutle, Nyameko Nkondlwane and Lakai Saadiq.

Zewande Bhengu

Zewande Bhengu is a growing, ambitious theatre director who has a strong opinion on the socio-political, the national economical and the general world of arts and recreation. His journey in art began at an elementary level with short poems and further on in high school, he began to perform poetry at school functions.

In 2007 he moved to Johannesburg to study Dramatic Arts at the National School of the Arts, during that time he performed in a number of poetry sessions, open mic sessions, expressions night and the like. He directed a number of poetic works at this time and his best work was ‘The Speakers’ that earned him platinum certificates upon its success. He also co-founded Night Vigil Sessions which was hosted at the South Point Building (Norvic House).

He was part of the ’21 Poets and Poem’ cast which played at the Jo’burg Theatre Space.Com and the Jo’burg Theatre Fringe Stage. His later successful work was when he co-wrote and directed FIRE:BURN, which was staged in 2013 during Wits University Orientation-Week, The National Arts Festival, 969 Festival and had its last run at the Drama For Life Festival. He has since won the All Res Council Talent Show, The Christian Action Fellowship Talent Show (Twice) and in a display of versatility, took second place at the Transformation Office’ Photographic Competition. He later took the King of the Mic tilte at the Word N Sound Series Season 4 Episode 1.

Roach Du Plessis

I started writing when I was about 15, with the intention of composing lyrics for a band that hadn’t even existed yet. I went on to play bass in many bands, (and now currently for Brainwreck), while my lyric books piled up.

At the age of 24, I went to Brighton in the UK, where I rediscovered my love for poetry in the form of spoken word at a venue called the Sanctuary. At that point, I dusted off my lyric sheets and got back into writing. Since then, I’ve gotten involved with Poetry collectives such as House of Hunger, Gold Peanuts, Liquid Tongue and Word N Sound, often taking part in their slams and open mics.

Through Poetry, I try to convey concern for topics that the public are kept blind to. I wouldn’t say I’m entirely political, but I do address issues that matter, while touching on subjects that remind us of our humanity and the importance of individuality.

I aim to make my writing extend as far as possible, but I do feel that if I can reach at least one person, and make them think or feel, my objective has been achieved.

Apiwe Mjambane

I am a 22 year old upcoming spoken word poet. I am random, I love music and I enjoy my own company. I am a social misfit to put it mildly.

It all started in 2005 when I was completing Grade 9 at the East London Science College in the Eastern Cape. I didn’t know much about urban poetry at the time but I wanted to deliver an assigned oral task in a new, more exciting way. I had just discovered that I could communicate differently. That I could speak poetry. And I kept it a secret until I came to Johannesburg.

In 2010, with my move to this concrete jungle, I began attending and performing at open mic poetry sessions. That is when I realised that I was not just entertaining what most people call a ‘hobby’ I was actually practising the ideal way of communicating with different souls. I think that’s one of the reasons I enjoy writing.

After studying journalism at the Boston Media House I started building my profile as an Artist. I have grown a lot in my craft. I am currently part of a spoken word organisation called Word N Sound Live Poetry and Music Series a platform which grants me the opportunity to express my love for language and self-expression.

Nkululeko Ngwenya

Nkululeko Ngwenya, better known as Page is a 20 year old poet from Durban, South Africa. Also a B Sc Marine Biology student at UKZN Westville Campus he only started really performing on 2011 but has already been accepted in the circles and hearts of where he’s been. He describes his poetry as, himself; saying “my poetry draws from characters such as my father and other close family as I do myself”.

He has performed at Jomba! , Word N Sound Experience, Give Me Ten Mics, Cup O’ Thought and other nationally prestigious arts festivals. He was one third of the Poetry Africa SlamJam team against the European team from the Ordsprak Festival (Sweden) on the 16th Poetry Africa Festival in 2012 as well as being chosen the next year again to partake as the prelude poet for the 17th Poetry Africa Festival he is nowhere near stopping as he was first to be revealed as one of the headliners at KwaZulu Poetry Festival this April. Slam poetry champion of Cup O’ Thought as well as winning many minor events of the same kind has seasoned Page as a performer to travel around South Africa performing in Pietermaritzburg, Vryheid, Eshowe, Johannesburg and many other places.

Words with which he lives his art are, “poetry is not only in the words, but in the world. It is in the land, in the air and mostly, in ourselves.”

Xongani Maluleka

Writer, poet and performer. Credited for her unmistakable truth telling and unique style of writing.

Xongani started writing in high school for the lack of original poetry in her literature syllabus. As there were not many writers at her school to inspire growth in her poetry, she took leave from writing until university when she joined the University of Johannesburg Fore.Word Poetry Society and began to blossom into an eminent performer.

She has performed for important stages including the Word N Sound Poetry Slam where she won second place in the August 2013 top five. Her showcase at the Next Generation ‘Let’s Talk Homosexuality’ show remains closest to her heart as it was there that her voice became an ally for the activism of LGBTI rights.

Xongani wishes to grow in her writing and performing to have a bigger and critical voice for her expression of truth and advocacy for courses that are socially ignored

Elysium Garcia

Elysium Garcia is a writer and performance poet. An artist from childhood, his writing is a peculiar gallery of imagination and dream scape. Inspired by works of magical realism, absurd fiction and texts of mysticism, he writes his poetry from an alternative perspective, or as he defines it; ‘The Shadows.’ Garcia has been seen on stages in Johannesburg, Durban, Pretoria and the Vaal.

In 2009, under a different forgotten name, he was part of a poetry collective formed at the Vaal University of Technology known as Secret Society 1696, blank compact discs were trafficked under seats at poetry shows with some of his’s primitive work of writing. It was not until 2010, that he opened up to a broader audience and came to Johannesburg to join and take part in the ever flourishing creative revolution of performance poetry.

Elysium has exhibited his work alongside many renowned names in the South African poetry community and international visitors respectively. He is one-third of Basic Channel, a poetry collective in Johannesburg currently working on numerous multimedia projects and literature products. He is the current Slam For Your Life champion and two times monthly (June and September) Word N Sound open mic poetry league king of the mic. His performance portfolio is comprised of performing at several poetry showcases and events in the country including a performance at TEDx Johannesburg in September 2013, Melville poetry festival (2013), Drama For Life poetry slam (2010), Izimbongi Poetry Festival (2011), Cup-O-Thought (Durban 2012), Current State of Poetry (2011), Likwid Tongue, UJ Poetry Festival (2010), he finished in the top 3 finalists of the first TEWOP Slam in 2012, top 10 finalist of the 2012 Word N Sound open mic league. He features in the 2012 Word N Sound poetry mix tape and KPN Live arts video mix tape.

Bafentse Ntlokoa

Born Sekang Bafentse Ntlokoa on the 26 of June 1985, this gifted mother of two fell in love with spoken word art after hearing Janet Jackson recite Maya Angelou’s ‘phenomenal woman’ in the movie Poetic Justice when she was only 10 years old. At age 16 she began scripting her own material but nothing she felt was poetry until age 21 when her spoken word artist boyfriend convinced her to take to the stage in 2006 at a poetry event organised by the VUT poetry society called Uvuko.

Bafentse did a few more performance in Johannesburg at Crammers coffee shop with balladry composition and some at Wits with but hasn’t always felt confident in her abilities as a spoken artist. It was only recently when she graced the stage with her enchanting piece called ‘beautiful like a gaping wound’ that the poetry public began to stand up and take note of this lyrical gem. Some patrons have been quoted as saying.

“If calligraphy had a sound, it would sound like the tone in your voice” -Sbusiso Simelane “Achingly honest, lyrically masterful, raw and gracefully eloquent at the same time, powerful yet dripping with delicate tenderness. I willingly flow where you flow” – Katlego Nakedi

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Review: Season 4 | Episode 2 – Tongue Fu

On 1 March 2014 we had the great honour of hosting Chris Redmond’s popular show, Tongue Fu. Thanks to the British Council’s Connect ZA, Chris flew into the country with pianist Arthur Lea for three shows; one in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Stellenbosch.

The Joburg show featured Luka Lesson (Australia), Mutle Mothibe and Vuyelwa Maluleke. Lwazilubanzi Mthembu, head of Word N Sound’s Live Music division put together the most amazing band; Lerato Lichaba (guitar), Ross Ramsunder (Drums), Mojalefa Mofokeng (percussion) and Thembinkosi Mavimbela (Double bass).

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Ep 1 – Top 5: Bafentse Ntlokoa

S4E1_Bafentse“Nothing quite beautifies the ugly and unbearable in the way that art does.” – Bafentse Ntlokoa

1. What inspired the poem you performed at the last Word N Sound Series and what message were you trying to convey through it?
A few things. Firstly, ‘beautiful like a gaping wound’ is one of my favourite complements to give (and receive though I haven’t ever). It’s not pretty but it’s undressed, it’s vulnerable, it’s messy, it’s inside out and so honest that it can’t help (well to me anyway) but be beautiful. And then it’s my love-hate (mostly love) relationship with romanticism because of how it exaggerates beauty and humans can be so literal in our interpretation that the peeling away of the romance can be very achy but in the same breath it’s also necessary to help us survive ourselves, it’s the orange with the castor oil to clean our insides. And nothing quite beautifies the ugly and unbearable in the way that art does so it’s my ode to that particular art form. It’s also having observed poets transform their deepest pain into the most beautiful art works that inspire life to hold on to itself just a little longer.

2. Take us through your creating process; how the lines come together, the memorizing and performance?
I guess I  listen for the memory of the feeling of what I’m trying to portray and search my mind for the story and the metaphors of how most exciting (for me) I could tell it.

3. Name 3 of your favourite poets currently?
Mutle Mothibe (no bias I swear) he astounds me and keeps getting better all the time. Kagiso Tshepe the imagery that live in dude’s head though and Mandi Poeficient Vundla is an Epic tale for me.

4. Can you take us back to the first time you fell in love with poetry? Can you remember the poem or where this took place?
I was 10 years old, watching the movie Poetic Justice and hearing Janet Jackson reciting Maya Angelo’s phenomenal woman and even more than the phenomenal woman described I felt a deeper desire to have been the author who designed her with words.

5. Name 3 of your favourite books?

  • A Thousand Names For Joy by Byron Katie,
  • Star Book by Ben Okri
  • Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
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