Tag Archives: tongue fu

“Working with the band gave me endless possibilities” – Jitsvinger

Jitsvinger

Imagine a band that had never rehearsed or even met performing alongside a poet whose poetry they have never heard. Sounds like the perfect recipe for disaster…or a truly magical experience where art is born right before your eyes.

In March, Chris Redmond hosted his legendary Tongue Fu shows in Johannesburg and in Cape Town featuring local poets and musicians.

In Cape Town, it was hip hop artist Jitsvinger who was the highlight of the show, earning him this Best Showcase nomination.

Tell us about this performance? Was there anything special for you? Did you enjoy it?
I enjoyed performing an unrehearsed set with a band I never knew. Before going on stage I gathered how well they know their instruments which gave me endless possibilities.
What has been your highlight as a poet this year?
The highlight this for me was working with the primary school learners on writing a public poem that “greets” visitors to their town called Darling which was unveiled at the opening of this year’s Voorkamerfest.
Which poet have you really enjoyed hearing/reading/watching this year? Who should we be looking out for?
I enjoyed watching Siphokazi Jonas perform her poetry alongside a young man called Josh Prinsloo. You should be on the look out for this here!

Who would you love to share a stage with and why?
I would love to be on stage with the legendary Pops Mohamed! He showed me how hip and relevant traditional instruments can be played alongside mainstream types of music.

Are you working on any interesting projects?
I’m currently working on a project called Jitsenic alongside Hip Hop beatmaker and producer Arsenic which made its debut at the annual Standard Bank Youth Jazz Festival in Grahamstown and WITS University’s 969Fest this year!

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“Poetry has been my quiet friend” – Vuyelwa Maluleke

VuyelwaMaluleke

When you first hear of the concept behind Chris Redmond’s Tongue Fu shows, you think it near impossible to get right. It takes a truly exceptional artist to perform seamlessly with a band who has never played together…or even met.

When the task of curating such a show was thrown our way, we knew former Purple Jupiter member, Vuyelwa Maluleka would be up for the challnge. But we were never ready for the show she put on for us.

Tell us about this performance? Was there anything special for you? Did you enjoy it?
I remember leading up to the performance feeling like I made a big mistake saying yes. I hate change, but change is the only way my work can move, it is how I work. I mean that I am an artist so I am supposed to be adaptable, to try things. But I was terrified, kept saying it and was so surprised that I loved every moment, how much fun it was.

What has been your highlight as a poet this year?
This has been the year for acting for me, moving into a new medium- television has been challenging and rewarding in the lessons it has given me about how I like to make work and what kind of work I’m interested in.

I was also shortlisted for the Brunel African poetry Prize and by this time next year I will have a chapbook to share. Poetry has been my quiet friend this year, i’ve read more than I’ve watched and I’ve been observing more than I’ve been doing. I believe in that ‘thinking, seeing, feeling’ break.


Which poet have you really enjoyed hearing/reading/watching this year? Who should we be looking out for?
Because I’ve focused my year on acting , I am so disconnected from the current climate of Joburg spoken word. When I say I’ve been reading, I have been reading, right now, Sonia Sanchez, Sandra Cisneros and Junot Diaz.


Who would you love to share a stage with and why?
I don’t know, I feel like collaborations in poetry is rare and lovely and time consuming and rare and rare.

Are you working on any interesting projects?
I am working on a show called ‘Ketekang that will be showing at the Market Theatre, i can’t wait!

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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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