Kingsley Holgate Foundation - Youth Messages of Hope - World Rhino Day - 22 September

Africa & Beyond – the next world-first Kingsley Holgate Expedition



Well known explorer Kingsley Holgate’s latest expedition ‘Cape Town to Kathmandu’ has a special rhino conservation focus and is carrying messages of solidarity against rhino poaching from South African youth to Chitwan National Park in Nepal. 

In a first-ever youth-focussed rhino conservation activation between the two countries, the expedition team will return to South Africa with reciprocal messages of support from Nepalese children.


Like Africa, Asia’s rhino populations have also been decimated by poaching, driven mainly by demand for rhino horn from China and Vietnam.  Today, less than 2,000 greater one-horned rhinos remain in the wild, with only two populations containing more than 100 rhinos: Kaziranga National Park in India and Chitwan National Park in Nepal.

“Chitwan National Park, despite being on the border with China, is a rhino conservation success story,” said Kingsley.  “Tens of thousands of greater one-horned rhinoceros once roamed throughout South East Asia, but the population was reduced by poaching and human population explosion to only a few surviving pockets.

“Nepal’s population reached a low of just 100 rhino in the 1960s but today, Chitwan is home to a growing population of 600 greater one-horned rhino, thanks to political will, support from the King of Nepal and commitment from neighbouring communities.”

Holgate is a keen conservationist and founder of the award-winning Rhino Art youth education campaign, which in partnership with Project Rhino, has now reached over 500,000 school children throughout South Africa and abroad in the past five years.  Its premise is simple yet effective: using art as the medium, children living in communities bordering game reserves receive a fun-filled, rhino conservation lesson and are encouraged to create their own Rhino Art messages.  The programme also assists game reserves to build good relations with their neighbouring communities and generates awareness of the real threat rhino poaching poses to tourism and rural job creation.

Using a specially-designed Rhino Art template that contains both the South African and Nepalese flags and images of both African and Asian rhino species, the Cape Town to Kathmandu expedition visited schools in the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal, conducting educational Rhino Art events and soccer matches. 

“We were amazed at the response,” said well-known conservationist Sheelagh Antrobus, who heads up the expedition’s community conservation work.  “The children not only created amazing rhino-themed art pieces but also wrote heartfelt messages of solidarity to their counterparts in Nepal.”

Hundreds of Rhino Art messages from South African children are now stored in the expedition’s three Land Rovers and are en route to Nepal.  These will be handed over to Nepalese conservation officials and children living in communities bordering Chitwan National Park, before Kingsley and the team head to Kathmandu for the expedition’s finale in mid-December. 




For further details contact:

Sheelagh Antrobus email

‘Sisters of the Wilderness’ Launches Outreach and Audience Engagement Programme


‘Sisters of the Wilderness’ Launches Outreach and Audience Engagement Programme

Saturday, 22 September, in Celebration of World Rhino Day & South Africa’s Heritage Month


Sisters of the Wilderness, the social impact feature-length documentary, which recently won best South African Feature Documentary at the Durban International Film Festival and qualifies for an Oscar consideration, is the foundation for an outreach and audience engagement programme that will use multiple communication platforms to raise awareness, inspire, communicate and engage audiences worldwide.


The outreach programme launches on World Rhino Day (22 September) at Nondumiso and Shiyikosi Schools near the Northern part of Hluhluwe where the film is set, with another screenings in Somkhele at the Isolesizwe Film Festival, organised by well-known conservationist Sheila Berry, schedule for Heritage Day on 24 September. These screenings are followed by screenings in the midlands communities that are home to the main characters in the film, with the first being shown at the Midlands Community College on 25 September.


The film, which follows the healing and transformation journey of five young Zulu women in the wilderness, is set in South Africa’s iconic and highly important natural and cultural heritage gem, the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, in KwaZulu-Natal. It highlights the threat to this valuable wilderness and its wildlife - the rhino, elephant and other species.


“We chose to launch our impact programme on South Africa’s Heritage Month and World Rhino Day because these two occasions are closely related to the themes in the film and to the project social impact goals,” says project Creator and Producer, Ronit Shapiro of One Nature Films.


“It is very important for us to start the programme in the communities bordering the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi park since one of our key impact goals is to help in the efforts to save the iMfolozi Wilderness from the threat of illegal hunting and unsustainable mining,” adds Ronit.


“We believe that communities can play a major role in the efforts to protect South Africa’s natural and cultural heritage, and we hope that through the film and a facilitated discussion after the screening, young people and community members will be empowered to get involved and find solution to issues affecting them and wild nature in their surroundings.” 


Each screening will be facilitated by local community members who have many years of experience in education, community engagement and are actively working in areas related to the themes in the film: women empowerment and wilderness conservation.


“We worked closely with these facilitators during the film production and provided them with specific materials for the facilitation sessions. They bring to the audience engagement a wealth of knowledge and wisdom from their day to day work as educationalists, wilderness / nature guides, and cultural advocates,” explains Shapiro.


The screenings will be followed up by an interactive discussion about the themes that the film highlights. The audience will also be asked to fill out feedback questionnaires to help with the impact evaluation.


In addition to the screenings in KwaZulu-Natal, the film is also joining the ‘Ignite Your Rights’ outreach tour, organised by the non-for-profit Sunshine Cinema, which uses free solar-powered interactive impact screenings to stimulate young people’s engagement. The tour starts in South Africa in October and then continues on to communities in Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi.


“We are in conversations with several other organisations in South Africa that work with young people, and we are looking forward to enhance our outreach through collaborations with like-minded organisations. We are also actively looking for funding and sponsors to support our expanding programme. Anyone interested can contact us if they wish to get involved,” says Shapiro.


The film continues its film festival screenings in South Africa at the Cape Town International Film Market and Festival, the Jozi film festival and the Mzansi Women Film Festival.


Screening Dates / Times:


Jozi Film Festival


Sunday 30 September, 2pm, Olive Tree Theatre


Sunday 30 September, 8pm, Bioscope Independent Cinema


Cape Town International Film Market and Festival 


Wednesday 10 October, 2pm, SK Nouveau 5


Saturday 13 October, 6pm, Nu Metro 4


Mzansi Women Film Festival   October 26 – 28  screening times TBC


Trailer : 




For additional information about Sisters of the Wilderness please contact:    

South African Publicist – Sharlene Versfeld –  +27 (0)83 3263236

Creator / Producer, Ronit Shapiro   Email: OR Tel/ whatapp: +44 (0)7971 196446  Skype: ronit.shapiro  

International Sales – Evolutionary Films, Michael John Tel: +44 208 215 3340


About One Nature Films:

One Nature Films is a social impact film production company based in London, UK, founded by Ronit Shapiro in 2011. Our vision is to create engaging high quality films that inspire, connect and make a difference. We believe in the power of film to make social and environmental impact. One Nature Films has a deep-rooted passion for the environment, the natural world and human society.  Our name ‘One Nature’ reflects our belief in the oneness of humanity and the interconnectedness of all things. We strive to be ethical and socially responsible. One Nature, beyond film-making, is a social enterprise focused on the wellness of people and the environment. Our aim is to bring about a positive social impact in any project we develop.

Key Credits:

Film Director & Cinematographer: Karin Slater

Project Creator / Producer: Ronit Shapiro

Executive Producers: Ken and Liz Whitney, Antonia Bothner, Ronit Shapiro

Editor: Anja Bombelli

Composer: Ian Arber

Production Company: One Nature Films


Social Media Links:

The project’s website:





Indiegogo 2017

Indiegogo 2016

Highlights from the film’s sound track


Proclamation 73 Exhibition – Call for Collaboration

 Caption to photo: "The late Joyce Thomas (left) standing with her father, Bernard Fynn, who was also her dance partner. The couple on the right are unknown. • The image was taken at a dance competition at the YMCA in Beatrice st, Durban, in the 1970s • photo courtesy of Lorin Sookool"

Media Release

Proclamation 73 Exhibition – Call for Collaboration

The curators of an exhibition titled Proclamation 73, which explores the family archives of people racialized as Coloured and Indian in Durban under the Group Areas Act, are calling for people to collaborate with them.

Proclamation 73 is a not-for-profit project conceived by Zara Julius and Chandra Frank in partnership with the Goethe-Institut South Africa as part of the Goethe-Institut Project Space (GPS) and eThekwini History Museums. It is scheduled to be exhibited at the Durban Art Gallery from 10 December, 2018 to 15 February 2019.  


“This exhibition takes family histories as an entry point into the creation of both an exhibition and a visual online archive,” explain Julius and Frank. “In bringing together a large collection of family photos of everyday lived experiences, Proclamation 73 portrays narratives on the meaning of loss, kinship and home. Proclamation 73 investigates and challenges how different racial histories and segregation operate within the city of Durban. The growing collection includes photos of weddings, beach days, ballroom dances, debutant balls, dance contests, street portraits, school pictures and other snapshots. The exhibition will cover a large time period, from the late 1860s until the very early 2000s, and therefore offers insight into different historical frameworks and fragmented histories and narratives.”


“This is an interactive non-profit project and we are calling on support to help develop an archival collection of the family album in Durban. We are hoping to grow this body of untold stories, and help document everyday memories and histories."


The curators are looking for families who were based in Durban between 1860s and 2000 press, and / or who were racialised as “coloured” or “Indian” during apartheid and or were relocated/forcibly removed to Sydenham, Greenwood Park, Chatsworth, Wentworth, Phoenix, Newlands East, Newlands West, Overport etc.


“We would like to ask people to submit photographs from their personal family albums that document their homes, family/friend gatherings, community, social events, school events, etc that date any time before 2000. We are also interested in receiving copies of written letters or any such archival objects that you feel are of particular interest.”


No original material will be kept by the curators.  Submissions are requested to be done by 22 October 2018.


Anyone wanting to contribute or collaborate can contact Zara on  or email her with high res scans and descriptions of photos, or photos and information can be submitted directly onto the Proclamation 73 website:



Vuyani Dance Company’s Thulisile Binda receives Pick of the JOMBA! Fringe Award

Media Release

Vuyani Dance Company’s Thulisile Binda

receives Pick of the JOMBA! Fringe Award


On Saturday night (1 September), Durban born and bred, and Johannesburg-based dance-maker Thulisile Binda from the Vuyani Dance Company received the Pick of the Fringe award for her work Ithemba at this year'sJOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience Fringe event at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre.


Thulisile received the prestigious acknowledgement from a committee comprising 2018 Standard Bank Young Artist for Dance and well-known South African dance-maker Musa Hlatshwayo, veteran dance writer and critic Adrienne Sichel and US-based art critic and writer Lauren Warnecke from the Chicago Times.


The award provides Thulisile with the supported opportunity to present a new work on the JOMBA! on the Edge at next year’s JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience.


Ithemba, is strikingly original a solo dance work and a very profoundly personal piece choreographed and danced by Thulisile Binda, which examines losses experienced, and how these become deep scars that come back to haunt.


“I would love to thank the festival for giving me the platform and opportunity to perform my solo," says a delighted Thulisile. “I would also like to thank the festival for recognising my work and I am grateful for the amazing opportunities that come with it.”


“We are thrilled so see such an array of strong work coming into the Fringe,” says Artistic Director of JOMBA, Lliane Loots. “Thulisile’s piece was extraordinarily personal yet echoing the very pertinent issues felt in South Africa today, and especially from a women’s perspective. We look forward to welcoming her back to JOMBA in 2019.”



8th annual Durban Gay & Lesbian Film Festival 


8th annual Durban Gay & Lesbian Film Festival 

The 8th annual Durban Gay & Lesbian Film Festival will be taking place from Friday 21 to Sunday 30 September 2018 at select pop-up venues around the city. Now in it’s eight year since opening in October 2011, the festival will screen 57 titles over a 10-day programme.


“Earlier this year our team decided on taking advantage of the Heritage Day long weekend in boosting the number of days patrons who work full time can enjoy our programme. So the decision was taken to position the Festival around this important holiday on 24 September.” says festival director Jason Fiddler.


“2018 is proving to be a financially challenging year for many South Africans, and we found it particularly hard as a cultural event to secure sponsorship. Fortunately, thanks to the invaluable ongoing support of Alliance Française of Durban and venue help from commercial property urban regeneration specialists Urban Lime, the DGLFF can confidently screen films this year. This is the first year we won’t be able to screen at our beloved KZNSA gallery, owing to a full exhibition calendar, but we certainly look forward to bringing some films back there next year.”


The format of the festival continues its eclectic tradition of including a tremendous diversity of subjects and film formats. The Opening Night film on Friday 21 September is a truly remarkable feature-length documentary, ‘GEORGE MICHAEL: FREEDOM – The Director’s Cut’. Directed by George Michael himself, and co-directed by David Austin, audiences can look forward to nearly two hours of celebrity interviews including sir Elton John, Mary J Blige and Liam Gallagher, whilst the man himself tells his story, his way. 


With frank revelations interspersed with the songs and music that made him a global pop and soul phenomenon, George shares an enthralling autobiographical journey that doesn’t shy away from unpleasant truths, nor does it sensationalise seminal experiences in his life and career. He simply and effectively shows how a gay boy found fame, excess, love, painful loss, contractual battles alongside his career defining music.


The DGLFF is proud to have secured the rights to show this incredible film, and audiences should note that there is only one screening of the film at a cost of R80 per ticket. Our pop-up main venue is at the top of vibrant Florida Road, at 344 Florida Rd, Durban. Ticket enquiries can be made via our website.


There are 7 feature films this year including ‘BREATHE’, a French coming-of-age drama about two young women and their relationship twists and ‘TIME IS UP’, a gay drama from Greek filmmaker Nicolas Pourliaros that poignantly looks a through monochromatic palette at the contemplation of life’s value. 


Johannesburg-based South African filmmaker Sean Steinberg will celebrate the world premiere of his 55-minute ‘(S)HE’ at DGLFF this year on Saturday 22 September. Breaking important ground for an under-considered community, ‘(S)HE’ tells the story of Penny Kemp, an intersex teenager who, after qualifying to compete in the 2016 Olympic trials, is forced to undergo gender treatment in order to keep her high levels of testosterone at bay. Only, she doesn’t want to. Made with a micro-budget the films explores a very difficult subject with delicacy.


‘STILL WAITING IN THE WINGS’ follows on two years later from their last visit to the DGLFF with a familiar cast of characters breaking out into original song as they busk their way ‘off-Broadway’ and battle their way through backstabbing musical theatre. Durban audiences will recall Canadian filmmaker and gay film star Charlie David and he continues his support of DGLFF with ‘SHADOWLANDS’, a darker and occasionally disturbing, if not exquisitely shot, homage to the bygone queer eras of the 30s, 50s and 60s that explores love in three separate stories – a couple renegotiating a relationship, a narcissist grasping to comprehend it, and star-crossed lovers mourning its loss.


Joseph Adesunloye, a British-Nigerian award-winning filmmaker premiered his ‘FACES’ at DIFF this past July to much acclaim. “Joseph and I felt that the film needed to be seen by more LGBTIQ people in Durbs and the producers kindly agreed to allow us to make it our Closing Night film on Saturday 29 September with an encore screening the following afternoon” says Fiddler. “Weaving such a powerful storyline with a pre-dominantly black UK cast, Joseph is able to tell Durban audiences of all persuasions and backgrounds utterly human and relatable stories, some that will shock, others that will make one cry, but ultimately that reinforce the beauty of love and friendship, especially between women who have endured great pain and suffering.”


There are a dozen other fascinating documentaries that explore transgender stories from Tonga to Chile to Pakistan, a gay Israeli man’s struggle for familial acceptance whilst HIV-positive and the acceptance he finds in a gay men’s choir in ‘WHO’S GONNA LOVE ME NOW?’, haunting stories from Zimbabwean gay men in ‘GIVE A MAN A MASK…’ and drag queen, and king, cultures from China to the United States.


The Festival programme continues to embrace and celebrate short film as powerful means of telling a diversity of stories, with high production values. 34 short films from 18 different countries across 5 continents have been packaged into seven feature slots that include lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer comedies, dramas and even stop-animation films. Audiences can again look forward to an entertaining, thought-provoking, disturbing and ultimately fun film selection in 2018.


On Heritage Day afternoon, and throughout the week of 24-28 September at 2pm and 4pm, the Festival offers patrons free screenings of a number of short films and documentaries, including acclaimed South African short films in the ‘MZANSI MIX’. Also continuing with is the effective Festival Ticket Pool that includes donated tickets for underprivileged, senior citizen and student patrons. Requests for tickets can be made direct with the organisers.


Those interested in supporting the Festival and the Ticket Pool, can use the Zapper code on display on the DGLFF website or Facebook page to facilitate card payments via the phone app, and even make donations to the Festival.


Normal screenings are R40 each with 50% concession to students and senior citizens with card – these are however not applicable to the Opening and Closing Nights that cost R80 per ticket. Patrons can also buy Silver Festival Passes for R250 that include 10 screenings and are transferrable. Gold Festival Passes this year are reduced at R500 that includes all screenings.


The main Festival Hub venue will be at POP, 344 Florida Road, Berea, a former art gallery space ideal as a pop-up screening venue, where most screenings will take place in 2018. Alliance Française will host two weeknights in Morningside. On Friday 28 September there will be a pop-up ‘T-DANCE’ social fundraiser at the German Club in Westville – details will be on our website and Facebook page. 


Details of events, and downloadable programme are available at – also Instagram/Twitter @dbngayfilmfest and Facebook @DGLFF



JOMBA! Honours Durban Dance-maker, Mduduzi Mtshali with the Eric Shabalala Dance Champion Award

Media Release

JOMBA! Honours Durban Dance-maker, Mduduzi Mtshali with the Eric Shabalala Dance Champion Award


Last night (5 September) local dance–maker Mduduzi Mtshali received the prestigious JOMBA! Eric Shabalala Dance Champion Award at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre at the 20th JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience hosted by the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Creative Arts.


Now in its 8th year, the award honours the memory of Eric Mshengu Shabalala who tragically passed away in 2011. Eric was a local dancer, choreographer, teacher and one of the founding dancers of the Siwela Sonke Dance Theatre in Durban. In a fitting tribute, the Centre for Creative Arts and the JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience Dance Festival has set up this annual award to honour some of KwaZulu-Natal’s stalwart dancers and dance teachers in his name.


Speaking at the award handover, Artistic Director of JOMBA! Lliane Loots said. “The award is given not only in recognition of performance or choreographic excellence, but also more profoundly and more importantly it is given in recognition of dance practitioners who have worked tirelessly to help grow a culture of dance and dance training in Durban – who have supported the growth of dance as an art form at both community and regional level.” 


“In selecting recipients, the JOMBA! committee look for those gifted individuals who have gone above and beyond – often without funding – to dedicate themselves to the cultural industry and to put KZN dancers and dance on the national and international map.”


Past recipients of this award include Jarryd Watson, Sifiso Khumalo, Byron ‘Bizzo’ Tifflin and Preston ‘Kayzo’ Kyd, Jabu Siphika, Julia Wilson and Zinhle Nzama, Ntombi Gasa, Musa Hlatshwayo and  S’fiso Magesh Ngcobo.


Mdu Mtshali is a Durban dancer, choreographer and is currently the dance lecturer at the Durban University of Technology.  In 1999, after completing his training at the then-Technikon Natal, he appeared with local dance companies before broadening his horizons by accepting an invitation to dance with the French dance company -Jean Francois Duroure and travelled all over Europe and the African continent. 


In 2002, he also spent a year at the London Contemporary Dance School in the UK after being awarded a Rio Tinto/ Richards Bay Minerals/ British Council Dance Scholarship. After graduating, he became highly active in the national dance arena performing and choreographing numerous works.


“While he is still an active choreographer and dance maker, we honour him tonight not only for his dance-making career but more especially for a long and illustrious career of over 10 years as a dance teacher and dance educator who has tirelessly given time, energy and space to train and nurture new generations of Durban dancers,” said Loots.


“In accepting this award, I will give back what Lliane Loots and the dance community in Durban has given to me, thank you,” said Mdu Mtshali.  “I enjoy making theatre that serves a greater social function as well as entertain. Credit must go to Eric Shabalala, the man who groomed me to be what I am today.”


Eric Shabalala would be proud of Mdu. In an article in Artsmart in 2003 about Mdu having won the scholarship to study in UK, Shabalala said, “Mdu started in my Stepping Into Dance classes at the Playhouse in 1995. I am very proud of him, he’s doing tremendous work. His skills have developed a lot and he never stops wanting to learn. He’s very disciplined, honest and reliable and is fully committed and focused. He respects his work.”


JOMBA! continues until Sunday September 9 at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre with one performance on September 7 at the Durban Art Gallery.

Book Launch - Body Politics: Fingerprinting South African Contemporary Dance by Adrienne. C. Sichel

Book Launch: Durban & Johannesburg

Body Politics: Fingerprinting South African Contemporary Dance by Adrienne. C. Sichel


The Ar(t)chive, South Africa’s award-winning theatre dance and physical performance archive, launches a ground-breaking new publication: Body Politics: Fingerprinting South African Contemporary Dance by pioneering veteran dance writer Adrienne Sichel at this year’s 20th JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience in Durban on 4 September, and at the Market Theatre, Johannesburg on 29 September.


Sichel has over the past 40 years, painstakingly documented in her journalistic writing, and critiques the changing landscape of contemporary dance in South Africa pre and post democracy. Her contribution to the dance industry has earned her the respect of both the national and international dance community.


Body Politics: Fingerprinting South African Contemporary Dance is a blend of Sichel’s journalistic writing and experience combined with a vast collection of research material on the evolution of contemporary dance in South Africa. This fingerprinting exercise connects some of the dots of how a very valuable, even unique, heritage, has taken shape.


Featured in this one of a kind book are artists, companies and festivals which include early pioneers and contemporary players such as: Sylvia Glasser, Tossie van Tonder, Carly Dibakoane, Robyn Orlin, Alfred Hinkel, Jay Pather, Debbie Rakusin, Jackie Mbuyiselwa Semela, Jayespri Moopen, Boyzie Ntsikelelo Cekwana, Vincent Sekwati Koko Mantsoe, Gregory Maqoma, Lliane Loots, Nelisiwe Xaba, PJ Sabbagha, Jeannette Ginslov, Dada Masilo, Mamela Nyamza, Fana Tshabalala, Jazzart Dance Theatre, Moving into Dance Mophatong, The First Physical Theatre Company, The Forgotten Angle Theatre Collaborative, Flatfoot Dance Company, Via Katlehong Pantsulas, Dance Umbrella, JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience and The Baxter Dance Festival.


Body Politics: Fingerprinting South African Contemporary Dance was originally edited by Tammy Ballantyne and Clare Craighead.


The Ar(t)chive in partnership with the JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience (KZN) and The Market Theatre (JHB), respectively, presents two launch events for the book.


The regional launch takes place at JOMBA! on Tuesday, 4 September at 5.30pm at The Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre Foyer (University of KwaZulu-Natal), and is a free event.


The National Launch takes place at The Market Theatre in Johannesburg on Saturday, 29 September at 3:30 for 4pm. This is also a free event . Space is limited and booking is essential by 14 September to


Books will be on sale at both events and cost R400.

The publication was made possible through the generous support of Business and Arts South Africa (BASA), RMB, Porcupine Press and Ian Hamilton.

JOMBA! runs from 28 August to 9 September at various venues in Durban. For more information like on Facebook (JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience) and follow on Twitter (Twitter@Jomba_dance).

JOMBA! on the Edge - 4 Sept - Sneddon


20th JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience


The annual JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience, hosted by the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Creative Arts showcases a feast of dance from August 28 to September 9 at various venues around the City.


One of the features of the festival, which celebrates it 20th anniversary, is JOMBA! ON THE EDGE, which aims to encourage young dance-makers to create new work and to draw new creative young audiences into the festival.


Three young professional local dance-makers were awarded grants to premier new work on this platform on Tuesday 4 September @ 7.30pm at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre. 


A major talent on the local dance landscape and winner of the  2017  ‘JOMBA! Pick of the Fringe’ award,  JC Zondi opens this programme with “Classi_filed” - a physical theatre piece that depicts the role clothing plays in our lives. Zondi’s unique style of contact improvising and lyrical choreography is intensified in this work.


The gutsy Kristi-Leigh Gresse, having just received a gold Fringe Ovations Award at the 2018 National Arts Festival for her work “Sullied”, offers her newest creations “Blank”. In this work she follows her interrogations of the role of women in society. Her strong technical prowess as a dancer is situated against stark and dangerous subject matter that is making the dance community in South Africa sit up and notice. 


Finally, Tshediso Kabulu who has opted to share this grant with fellow dancer Thami Majela in a joint creation called “IMVELO”. Imvelo is a Zulu word that translates to mean origin and/or tradition. This work is a gentle and often intimate look at human relationships that journeys back to origins and beginnings. It question societal ‘truths’ that often get in the way of love and tenderness. 


Of special note is that all three of these choreographers have collaborated with JOMBA!’s visiting Chicago (USA) lighting designer Julie Ballard  who has shared her technical skills with these 3 emerging choreographers in bringing their work to the stage.  


Like on Facebook (JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience) and follow on Twitter and Instagram (Jomba_dance).




JOMBA! @DAG – September 7 at 6pm

Media Release

JOMBA! @DAG – September 7 at 6pm

20th JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience


Dance that moves away from traditional performance spaces to challenge its audience has always been of interest to contemporary dance-makers. In the spirit of adventure and creating new ways in which to interact and engage with audiences, this year the JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience joins forces with the Durban Art Gallery to present a JOMBA! @ DAG a free public event on Friday, September 7 at 6pm at the Gallery in Anton Lembede Road.


This event brings together dance-makers and fine artists in the unique site-responsive space of DAG. In keeping with the Women’s Month DAG exhibition theme of “SHE” which has been curated by Jenny Stretton, JOMBA! @DAG features work by Durban women dance-makers Lorin Sookool, and Jabu Siphika and Zinhle Nzama, Swiss choreographer and dancer Ioannis Mandafounis, Malagasy Gaby Saranouffi who partners with  South Africa’s Moeketsi Koena and films by Spain’s Aïda Colmenero Dïaz


Lorin Sookool, fast developing a reputation for her iconic pop art, street funk and contemporary dance confluence, presents “The Moon and Her Bloom” that looks at the relationship between the sexual and the sacred. Jabu Siphika and Zinhle Nzama collaborate on a dance performance installation called “Locked” that looks at contemporary black (African) women’s lives that transect township, rural and urban living. The work will feature 3 generations of women (mothers, children and gogos). It is a very personal encounter with black women’s private and public selves and the questions around identity that link into the ‘#metoo’ phenomenon.


Ioannis Mandafounis, once again shares his unique vision of challenging audience/dancer relationships. His latest duet “ONE-ONE-ONE” offers the simple staging of two parallel lines on the floor and two chairs, one on each line. The dancers invade the public space and invite the audience into an unexpected experience providing a witty and challenging dance work


Malagasy Gaby Saranouffi partners with  South Africa’s Moeketsi Koena in a riveting duet “CORPS/BODY” a collaboration between four artists from France, South Africa, Madagascar and Mozambique that explores embodied links between the real and unreal through photography, music and dance.  


Dance films created by Spain’s Aïda Colmenero Dïaz called “SHE-POEMS” are short solo pieces of contemporary dance performed by creative African women that Dïaz has encountered in her travels on the continent and are inspired by poems written by women.


JOMBA! @DAG is free and there is a cash bar.

Like on Facebook (JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience) and follow on Twitter (Twitter@Jomba_dance).-


Fabulous Fringe Events at JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience.



Fabulous Fringe Events at JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience.


The JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience, hosted by the Centre for Creative Arts, UKZN,  celebrates its 20th edition, offering its audiences a variety of dance in which to indulge over the 13 day event taking place from 28 August to 9 September.


This year, besides a packed programme of dance on the main festival,  six new short works are featured on the Fringe which takes place on Saturday, September 1 at 7.30pm at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre.


“This open performance platform provides an opportunity for choreographers (some new to choreography and some professional dancers and dance makers) to present their work in a professional theatre environment with the support of a full technical team,” says Artistic Director of JOMBA! Lliane Loots. “This is one of the ways in which the JOMBA! festival offers assistance in developing dance and choreographic talent, by offering open professional performance spaces.”


Works to be presented this year include Mbontsi and Alice Findlay – Pietermaritzburg (KZN), Flatfoot Dance Company (Junior Company: Sbonga Ndlovu, Ndumiso Dube, Siseko Duba, Qhawe Ndimande and Mthoko Mkhwanazi – Durban (KZN), Mlondi Ngubani –  Pietermaritzburg (KZN), Sabelo Cele – Pietermaritzburg (KZN), Sizwe Hlophe – Durban (KZN) and Thulisile Binda – Johannesburg (Gauteng).


For the second year running the Centre for Creative Arts, will honour one of the works with the “JOMBA! Pick Of the Fringe Award” in recognition of the excellence that independent artists and companies bring to this platform. This award comes with a small cash prize but more significantly the artist making the winning work is automatically invited to the 2019 JOMBA! KZN ON THE EDGE platform to premier a new fuller length work that will be financially and technically supported by JOMBA!


The adjudication panel for 2018 are Adrienne Sichel - independent arts/dance journalist and writer, and curator for The Ar(t)chive at the Wits School of Arts., Lauren Warnecke – special guest to the JOMBA! 2018 festival, dance writer and journalist (Chicago, USA)  and Musa Hlatshwayo – dancer, choreographer and Director for Mhayise Producitons and 2018 recipient of the Standard Bank Yong Artist Award. 


Last year’s award went to Pietermaritzburg’s JC Zondi, who has now been invited to present a new work on the “JOMBA! ON THE EDGE” platform on Tuesday, September 4 at 7.30pm at the Sneddon.


Then in an endeavour to encourage young dancers, the free JOMBA! Youth Fringe takes place at the Open Air Theatre (UKZN – Howard College Campus) on Sunday 2 September at 2pm.


This is a popular festival event for the sheer vitality and energy of the performances,  and is a showground for young dancers under 16. This year will feature works by many of Durban’s dance development programmes showing off the incredible dance training being given. Twelve groups of young KZN dancers feature including Siyakhula Dance Project (Flatfoot Dance Company) – KwaMashu, Newlands Youth Organisations – Newlands, Project Hheshe Nsizwa(Flatfoot Dance Company) – Umlazi, Project Dudlu Ntombi (Flatfoot Dance Company) – Umlazi, Martizbrug College - Pietermatrizburg, St. Annes  - Hilton, Slangspriut – Pietermatrizburg,Epworth School – Pietermaritzburg, Nqabakazulu High School – KwaMashu, Waterloo Dance Programme (Flatfoot Dance Company) – Waterloo, JG Zuma High School – Inanada, William Clarke Gardens Dance Programme  (Flatfoot Dance Company) – Sherwood.


Tickets at the Sneddon Theatre are R80 or R60 (scholars/students/pensioners/block booking of 10 or more). Booking through Computicket (or at venue from one hour before). Durban Art Gallery and Open Air Theatre are free events.


Like on Facebook (JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience) and follow on Twitter (Twitter@Jomba_dance).



New book from Kingsley Holgate: Africa – a Love Affair with a Continent.

Media Release

New book from Kingsley Holgate 


KINGSLEY HOLGATE the well-known humanitarian adventurer, TV personality, Land Rover Ambassador, Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, renowned speaker and a legend known as  ‘the most travelled man in Africa’ has launched his new book Africa – a Love Affair with a Continent.

Holgate is the author of four previous best-selling books on travel and adventure:  ‘Cape to Cairo’, ‘Capricorn – following the invisible line’, Africa – in the footsteps of the Great Explorers’ and ‘Afrika – Despatches from the Outside Edge’.  


This widely-anticipated 5th book, Africa – a Love Affair with a Continent has been five years in the making and spans 30 years of adventure and exploration in every country in Africa, including all of her island states.  


Armed with a Zulu calabash and Scrolls of peace and goodwill, by Land Rover, inflatable boat, Swahili dhow and on foot, Kingsley and his adventurous team have traversed the continent on world-first expeditions, touching over a million lives through their humanitarian and conservation efforts.


Packed with stories taken from Kingsley’s pile of dog-eared expedition journals and laced with his legendary humour, each chapter is a stand-alone chronicle of a life of adventure; the excitement, escapades and characters met along the way, with beautifully detailed descriptions of Africa’s wildlife, wild places and fascinating tribes – and the downright scary moments when things go wrong, from a croc chomping the inflatable boat and attack by pirates, to child soldiers high on cocaine. 


With dramatic, full-colour images taken on each expedition, it’s a must-have for all adventurous souls and is arguably the most comprehensive African adventure book ever written.


Africa – a Love Affair with a Continent was launched in Cape Town on Madiba Day, 18 July 2018 as part of Kingsley’s next world-first Land Rover expedition (Cape Town to Kathmandu) and will be available by direct order from the Kingsley Holgate Foundation in August.


For more information go to



‘No-one I know has done more African miles in a Land Rover than Kingsley Holgate, which is why he has been able to unearth these incredible true tales from the beautiful continent.  This book will teach you more about Africa than Google or the Lonely Planet.’  Patrick Cruywagen, Land Rover Monthly UK


‘Life has lots of simple pleasures — the warm sun on your back or a cool sea breeze in your hair – or the fact that there are still larger-than-life characters around such as Kingsley Holgate.  To call him an explorer or humanitarian doesn’t do true justice to the man.  Kingsley is an absolute force of nature; he brings exuberance, energy, enthusiasm and undiluted vivacity to everything he does.

This new book is a collection of his expeditions and adventures that are unique to Africa. You will not find such wonderful tales of, and insights into, this magical land anywhere else.  You will be transported to a fireside under the megawatt stars of an African night with a maestro storyteller entrancing you with words so vivid that they are forever etched on your brain.  The extraordinary characters, the gripping anecdotes, the edge-of-seat adventures and the superb humanitarian work each expedition brings is a magnificent testimony to a richly-lived life, where being bored is an alien and unforgivable concept.’  Graham Spence, co-author of the best-seller The Elephant Whisperer



JOMBA! Dance and Choreographic Workshops

Media Release

JOMBA! Dance and Choreographic Workshops


The annual JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience will host a variety of workshops open to the general public from 29 August to 8 September at various venues around Durban. 


JOMBA! is hosted by the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Creative Arts and celebrates its 20th edition this year under the theme ‘Legacy’. These workshops fall within the festival’s ongoing endeavours to develop the South African contemporary dance landscape, and are offered free of charge to participants, however booking is essential as places are limited. Unless otherwise stated these workshops are open to dancers 18 years and older of all abilities.


An Afrofusion session for youth from 6 to 18 years of age conducted by Johannebsurg-based Moving Into Dance Mophatong kicks off the workshops at KwaMashu Sports Hall on Thursday 29 August from 4pm to 5:30 pm.  On the same day, other dance-makers from Moving Into Dance Mophatong will conduct an Adult Afrofusion session from 4:30 to 6 pm. This and all other workshops take place at the UKZN Dance Studio, Drama Studies Practical Block.


From India, celebrated dance-maker Anita Ratnam will facilitate a workshop on Saturday, 1 September from 10am to 12noon. This choreographic workshop looks at some of the styles and techniques that Anita uses to create her dance work. No prior knowledge of Indian classical dance is needed and this workshop.


Award-winning Durban dancer and choreographer, Musa Hlatshwayo will facilitate a session which focuses on growing the lexicon of dance language that includes an encounter with both traditional and African contemporary dance styles. This workshop takes place on Tuesday, 4 September from 4pm to 6pm.


Malagasy dance-maker Gaby Saranouffi and South Africa’s Moeketsi Koena will facilitate a workshop that will look into exploring some of the unique contemporary styles and techniques that are seen at the confluence of their collaborative dance work. This takes place on Thursday, 6 September from 5pm to 6:30 pm.


Spain’s extraordinary Aida Colmenero Diaz takes a session on September 8 from 10am to 12 noon where she will explore her African dance and Spanish roots in a fire-filled and energetic workshop.


Swiss choreographer and dancer Ioannis Mandafounis will facilitate a closed workshop between with 12 invited young professional Durban dancers where he will be pushing technique and improvisational skills.


To book a place email no later than 2 days before the workshop.



2nd International Bow Music Conference & Concert (29 Aug - 1 Sept) - Durban



The 2nd International Bow Music Conference,  is being held in conjunction with the 12th South African Society for Research in Music (SASRIM) Conference at the University of KwaZulu-Natal from 29 August to 1 September.

Hosted by the School of Arts Performing Arts Cluster and curated by an international team led by Dr Sazi Dlamini, UKZN’s renowned music scholar and well-known township jazz exponent, the 2018 event has partnered with SASRIM in a diverse programme of paper presentations, workshops, select musical performances and documentary film screenings.

As with the inaugural conference of February 2016 the present gathering has attracted a wide-ranging interest of local and international music researchers, bow music enthusiasts and players alike. Of special interest is that a keynote address will be given by Gerhard Kubik, Austrian cultural anthropologist and music ethnologist, titled “Musical Bows and the Spirit of Human Discovery” which will be read by Prof Andrew Tracey, celebrated South African, ethnomusicologist, Emeritus Professor of African Music and composer.

One of the conference highlights is a day-long programme, on Saturday 1 September at Durban’s BAT Centre, which includes free bow music workshops and hands-on demonstrations, a musical bow instrument mini-market, an Afro-Brazilian Percussion Workshop and a demo/talk performance by Colin Offord, the Australian mouthbow inventor and performer.  The workshops begin at 10am and run until 3pm. No booking is needed.

The afternoon will culminate in Conference Closing Concert from 3pm featuring an array of top local and international musical bow performers, among them Madosini (Cape) - umrhubhe, uhadi, sitolotolo; Bavikile Ngema (KwaZulu-Natal) - makhweyana, mbheleza/mqangala;  Prof Greg Beyer and Arcomusical Brazil (USA and Brazil) - berimbau chamber ensemble; Rafael Mathusi & Maneto Tefula (Moçambique) - xizambi, xipendani, xitende, kankubwe; Cathrina Make Magagula (Swaziland) – makhweyane; Mpho Molikeng (Lesotho) – lesiba, sekhankule; Cara Stacey & Jason Finkelman (SA and USA) – umakhweyana, umrhubhe, berimbau and electronics; Mtumbateka Mamatsharanga (Northern Province) – dende.

Tickets for the closing concert are R60 and R30 for students and available at the door.

Registration for the conference takes place via the SASRIM portal online:

For the full programme and other information check out



Maritzburg SPAR Women’s 10/5km Challenge Sunday 19 August - results

Maritzburg SPAR Women’s 10/5km Challenge

Pietermaritzburg: Sunday 19 August


Drama unfolded today (Sunday, 19 August) in the Maritzburg SPAR Women’s 10/5km Challenge as Irvette van Zyl running for Nedbank claimed victory in KZN’s capital in a time of 34.26.


Van Zyl, and a group of four elite athletes led from the onset, getting to the 4km mark looking fresh and energised. The tightly bunched pack parted ways nearing the Time Freight avenue, with Glenrose Xaba, Kesa Molotsane, Manorallo Tjoka and Neheng Khatala rounding the turning circle in Park Drive at the bottom of Princess Margaret.


Pioneering, van Zyl continued straight passing the circle and made her way through to the avenue in the Mayor’s Garden running solo. Having slowed down in the uncertainty of being left by the leading pack, van Zyl lost critical seconds deciding if her homework was in fact correct and her decision was the correct course.


Powering up the incline, van Zyl got back into stride, rounding back onto Park Drive, passing through the half way mark at 16.43. She was followed by Rudo Mhonderwa and Rutendo Nyahora who were neck-and-neck at the 5km mark, going through at 16.58.


Confusion ensued with the front runners between 4km and 5km, now consisting of four runners and Lebogang Phalula trailing just behind, with no sign of van Zyl and the lead bicycle. The crucial decision by the four of the five who followed the vehicles which were forced off the route as no vehicles are allowed through the avenue in the Mayor’s Garden. Van Zyl started to round the roundabout but remembered from the previous year, the route going through the park.


“We were told that the race was exactly the same from last year, and we received an sms yesterday about the water table being at the top of the park. So, I knew that we needed to go through the park. Three of us in the leading pack had done the race last year, so it wasn’t new to us. I knew the route, and I knew where I was going so I am happy that I stuck to my decision to go solo,” said a relieved van Zyl.


For Xaba and Molotsane, the Maritzburg race was a make or break race for them as going into the PMB race, the two athletes had a single point separating them in the Grand Prix.


“Five runners were disqualified for following the incorrect route.  At the conclusion of the race, objections were lodged, and a jury was convened. A unanimous decision was made and Irvette van Zyl is recognised for running the correct route, therefor she officially is the winner of the 2018 Maritzburg SPAR 10km race,” stated Race Director, Brad Glasspoole at the media briefing following the announcement.


The five runners disqualified are Glenrose Xaba, Kesa Molotsane, Manorallo Tjoka, Neheng Khatala and Legogang Phalula.


“It was quite a dramatic day for the top runners, but we are pleased that the policies and procedures in place were able to help resolve the results. I would like to thank the officials for their professional handling of this. Alongside all of this, we had 4,502 people out on the route who had a magnificent day in glorious weather,” said Max Oliva, MD for SPAR KZN.


The final race in the Grand Prix takes place in Johannesburg on 7 October, which promises to be an exciting conclusion to the elite race.


For more info visit or like the race’s Facebook page.


Female Senior

1 Irvette van Zyl 34.26, 2 Jenet Mbhele 34.47, 3 Rutendo Nyahora 34.56, 4 Portia Ngwenya 35.16, 5 Rudo Mhonderwa 35.38, 6 Patience Murowe 36.16, 7 Nobukhosi Tshuma 36.28, 8 Cornelia Joubert 36.37, 9 Cherise Sims 36.52, 10 Mokulubete Makatisi 36.59


Female Junior

1 Liza Kellerman 38.38, 2 Simangaliso Madlala 39.35, 3 Cherry Lee Schoeman 40.28


Female 35 – 39

1 Fikile Mbuthuma 37.59, 2 Cary-Ann Smith 43.53, 3 Nikki Kelbrick 58.52


Female 40 – 49

1 Ronel Thomas 40.23, 2 Elizabeth Dlhiwayo 40.57, 3 Janene Carey 41.52


Female 50 -59

1 Grace de Oliveira 44.45, 2 Xolisile Mwelase 48.11, 3 Gail Babich 48.40


Female 60 -69

1 Blanche Moila 49.11, 2 Jenny Taylor 51.29, 3 Sibongile Zakwe 01:00.35


Female 70+

1 Gill Tregenna 59.25, 2 Ivy Gertrude Lottering 01:20.51



Photographs by Rogan Ward 



Step to it Maritzburg - The Maritzburg SPAR Women’s 10/5km Challenge

Step to it Maritzburg

The Maritzburg SPAR Women’s 10/5km Challenge

Dubbed, South Africa’s most beautiful race, the next leg of the national series of the SPAR Women’s 10/5km Challenge comes to the Capital on Sunday, August 19 and participants have until Monday, August 13 to enter online, otherwise they will have to manually enter at race registration on August 17 and 18.

This past weekend, over 25,000 women came out in full force for the Pretoria race that saw Glenrose Xaba, take the honours in a time of 33.56 minutes, and the excitement has started to build as all eyes focus on Maritzburg.

Once again, the Challenge starts outside Maritzburg College in Princess Margaret Drive, taking a route through the picturesque Alexandra Park, and through the outer parts of the CBD on Sunday 19August. Both the 10km and 5km races start at 8am and end at The Oval Cricket Stadium in Alexandra Park. 

All participants will receive a race T-Shirt and goodie bag when collecting their race numbers, which must be done at Race Registration, and after completing the race participants will receive a breakfast pack. There is a Kids Zone for children to have some fun at the finish, however this is not a child care facility and adults still need to look after their children.


Entries can still be done online at using a credit card by 13 August. Manual Entry at Race Registration takes place on Friday 17 August (10am to 5pm) and Saturday 18 August (10am to 3pm) at The Oval Cricket Stadium in Alexandra Park.

Entries to the 10km distance are open from age 14 and to the 5km from age 9, the age restrictions being applicable on the day of the competition. Entry fees are R110 for the 10km licensed athletes and for all the 5km runners, and R125 for 10km unlicensed athletes. The field is capped at 4,500 entries. This year, R2 from each entry goes to the official race charity - CHOC (Childhood Cancer Foundation) Pietermaritzburg.

For more information contact the race organisers on or visit the official race on or like the Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram.



20th JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience “LEGACY” 28 August – 9 September 2018

20th JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience


28 August – 9 September 2018


Durban, SA: The annual JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience, hosted by the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Creative Arts, celebrates its 20th edition with the theme ‘Legacy’, from 28 August to 9 September 2018 at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre, with special performances at the Open Air Theatre and the Durban Art Gallery. This landmark edition celebrates 20 years of bringing Durban the world through contemporary dance and nurturing and supporting the development of contemporary dance through open workshops, grants and the creation of platforms for dance-makers to showcase their work.


This year’s JOMBA! sees dance companies and choreographers making their way from Johannesburg, Cape Town, Spain, Switzerland, India, USA and Madagascar to join Durban companies in a programme of innovative dance theatre work that promises to provoke, entertain, delight and challenge. This 2018 ‘Legacy’ edition of JOMBA! also has a strong focus on ‘Durban Dances’ and offers unprecedented spaces for the evolution of eThekwini’s dance community. 


The JOMBA! opening features Johannesburg-based Moving into Dance Mophatong (MIDM) which is celebrating its own 40th anniversary this year. “As they performed in the very first edition of JOMBA! in 1998, we felt it only fitting to honour them,” says Artistic Director of JOMBA! Lliane Loots.  MIDM will perform two new works: Sunnyboy Motau’s “Man Longing”, a brooding yet beautiful work that uses dance and poetry to explore the sinister world of human trafficking, and guest artist, Khutjo Green’s collaboration with MIDM women dancers. “The women who fell from the moon” inspired by the Nina Simone’s song ‘Four Women’, a searing exploration of the collective power of woman.


The acclaimed Indian dancer and choreographer Anita Ratnam presents her iconic and award winning work “A Million Sitas. Heralded as one of the forerunners of Indian contemporary dance, Ratnam’s performance weaves the many disciplines of dance, theatre, ritual, archaeology and women's issues. “A Million Sitas” is a re-telling of the classic Ramayana, using every weapon in her creative dance arsenal - voice, movement, song, dance, and storytelling - to illuminate the character of Sita. 


Two dance-makers from Madagascar feature this year: Malagasy Gaby Saranouffi partners with  South Africa’s Moeketsi Koena in a riveting duet “CORPS/BODY” a collaboration between four artists from France, South Africa, Madagascar and Mozambique that explores embodied links between the real and unreal through photography, music and dance.  And Malagasy Haja Saranouffi presents a duet called “Danse Des Bouteilles” based on a dual between myth and reality and in which the ‘art of bottles’ interrogates how we place value on a person in society. 


Spain’s Aïda Colmenero Dïaz presents her solo “AKA NATIVA”; a quirky and beautiful work using voice and body that is a manifesto for life and the living. Dïaz has a strong and long relationship with many African dancers, which led to her astounding short-film project called “SHE POEMS” of solo dance performed by creative African women that Dïaz has encountered in her travels on the African continent and are inspired by poems written by women. Some of the these will be screened at JOMBA! @ DAG.


Swiss choreographer and dancer Ioannis Mandafounis, once again shares his unique vison of challenging audience/dancer relationships. His latest duet “ONE-ONE-ONE” offers the simple staging of two parallel lines on the floor and two chairs, one on each line. The dancers invade the public space and invite the audience into an unexpected experience providing a witty and challenging dance work. 


As part of this year’s “Legacy” theme and “Durban Dances” focus,  grants, commissions and various spaces for the ongoing evolution of eThekwini’s dance were given to local dance-makers. 2018 Standard Bank Young Artist (SBYA) for Dance, Durban’s own Musa Hlatshwayo presents, “UDODANA”, which premiered at the National Arts Festival playing to standing ovations. This powerful work explores the black male body, challenging both traditional and religious systems that continue to dehumanise men into a state “where black masculinities are forever changing for the worst while patriarchy continues to reign supreme”.


JOMBA! presents an unique collaboration between Durban’s Flatfoot Dance Company and Cape Town’s Unmute Dance Company. Both dance companies have a reputation for working in spaces that challenge access and inclusivity in South African dance and this meeting is sure to be explosive. A double bill kicks off with Yaseen Manuel’s provocative “ASLAMA” and the journeys into his own identity as a Muslim South African dancer. “ASLAMA” takes its inspiration from the struggles of the Syrian people. In a context of on-going war and violence, Manuel – and the dances from Unmute and Flatfoot - wonder where personal faith comes into our making of dance. The second work, a collaboration between choreographers Lliane Loots and Andile Vellum is titled “The Longitude of Silence”, which has been created over only 14 rehearsals in 14 days. “The Longitude of Silence” begins to question how we map identity through shared sound and ask what happens in the chasm of silence.


JOMBA! 2018 grants were awarded to three young professional local dance-makers to premier new work on the especially focused JOMBA! ON THE EDGE platform. JC Zondi, the 2017 winner of the ‘JOMBA! Pick of the Fringe’ award, opens this platform with “Classi_filed”, the gutsy Kristi-Leigh Gresse  offers her newest creations “Blank” and Tshediso Kabulu, sharing this grant with fellow dancer Thami Majela, presents a joint creation called “IMVELO”. 


JOMBA! hosts its first major partnership with the Durban Art Gallery on Friday 7 September. Titled ‘JOMBA!@ DAG’, this free event sees the DAG spaces offer an alternate kind of challenge to dance-makers and for those intrepid artists who work outside of the traditions of the proscenium arch. Coinciding with the DAG Women’s Month exhibition titled “SHE”, this JOMBA! event has offered grants to three local female dance makers to premier new work. Lorin Sookool, Jabu Siphika and Zinhle Nzama.


Usual festival favourites will include the  Fringe and youth fringe as well as a full programme of workshops and master classes by all of the participating dancers and choreographers. For the full festival programme and listing of workshops go to and click on the JOMBA! page. All workshops and classes are offered free of charge (dancer over 16yrs only) but booking is essential.


Most performances take place at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre at 7.30pm (9 September @ 2.30pm) with the youth fringe at the Open air Theatre UKZN on 2 September at 2pm and Durban Art Gallery 7 September at 6pm. Tickets at the Sneddon Theatre are R80 or R60 (scholars/students/pensioners/block booking of 10 or more). Booking through Computicket (or at venue from one hour before). Durban Art Gallery and Open Air Theatre are free events.


Like on Facebook (JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience) and follow on Twitter (Twitter@Jomba_dance).


The 20th JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience is under the artistic direction and curatorship of Lliane Loots and is organised and hosted and run by the Centre for Creative Arts (University of KwaZulu-Natal), and is supported primarily by the eThekwini Municipality. 



39th Durban International Film Festival Awards

Media Release

39th Durban International Film Festival Awards


The 39th Durban International Film Festival held its awards ceremony last night (Saturday, 28 July) at Suncoast CineCentre on as filmmakers and film-lovers gathered to watch the official closing film Rafiki, directed by Wanuri Kahiu. 


A total of 17 awards were given out at the ceremony:

Best Feature Film: The Reports on Sarah and Saleem, directed by Muayad Alayan, and produced by Muayad Alayan, Rami Alayan, Hans de Wolf, Hanneke Niens, Rebekka Garrido, Rodrigo Iturralde, Georgina Gonzalez, and Alejandro Duran. The award is accompanied by a cash prize of R50 000.

Best South African Feature Film: High Fantasy, directed by Jenna Bass and produced by David Horler and Steven Markovitz. The film received a cash prize of R25 000.

Best Documentary: New Moon, produced and directed by Philippa Ndisi-Hermann. The film received a cash prize of R25 000.

Best South African Documentary: Sisters of the Wilderness, directed by Karin Slater  and produced by Ronit Shapiro. The award is accompanied by a cash prize of R25,000.

Best Direction: Constantin Popescu for Pororoca 

Best Cinematography: Liviu Marghidan for Pororoca

Best Screenplay: Jennifer Fox for The Tale

Best Actor: Bogdan Dumitrache for his role as Tudor in Pororoca, directed by Constantin Popescu 

Best Actress: Maisa Abd Elhadi for her role as Bisan in The Reports on Sarah and Saleem

Best Editing: Anne Fabini, Alex Hall and Gary Level for The Tale

Artistic Bravery: was won jointly by High Fantasy, directed by Jenna Bass and Supa Modo directed by  Likarion Wainaina.

Best South African Short Film: Stillborn, directed by Jahmil X. T. Qubeka and produced by Huanxi Media Group, Xstream Pictures, and Yellowbone Entertainment. The film received a cash prize of R20 000 sponsored by the Gauteng Film Commission.

Best African Short Film: Aya, directed by Moufida Fedhila and produced by Appel d’Air Films. The film also received a cash prize of R20 000 sponsored by the Gauteng Film Commission.

Best Short Film: -The Patience of Water(La Paciencia Del Agua), directed by Guillem Almirall,. The film received a cash prize of R20 000 from the Gauteng Film Commission.

Audience Choice Award: The State Against Mandela and the Others, directed by Nicolas Champeaux and Gilles Porte, which received a cash prize of R25 000.

Amnesty International Durban Human Rights Award: Silas, directed by Anjali Nayar and Hawa Essuman and produced by Appian Way, Big World Cinema and Ink & Pepper Productions.

Best Wavescape Film: Heavy Water, directed by Michael Oblowitz


DIFF has recently been included as a Documentary Feature Qualifying Festival by the Academy of Motion Picture, Arts and Sciences, which means that both the winners of the Best Documentary, New Moon and Best SA Documentary Sisters of the Wilderness, will now automatically qualify for consideration for an Oscar nomination.


The Shorts jury included creative media education and development  specialist Alicia Price and Leon Van Der Merwe of the Cape Town International Film Market and Festival. The fiction feature jurors were SA Producer Bongiwe Selane, Nigerian actor  Hakeem Kae Kazim and Nigerian actress Nse Ikpe-Etim. The documentary film jury included South African producer Uzanenkosi, Zimbabwean producer Nakai Matema, Nigerian filmmaker Mahmood Ali-Balogun and and Berlin-based freelance filmmaker, writer and curator, Dorothee Wenner 


The festival continues until Sunday, 29 July,  at various venues around Durban.  DIFF 2018 is part of a month-long feast of film in Durban, including the BRICS Film festival and industry programmes, the Durban FilmMart, Isiphethu, Talents Durban, and the Nature Environment and Wildlife Film Congress. 

Online and Bulk entries open for SPAR Women's 10/ 5km in PMB.

Maritzburg SPAR Women’s 10 / 5km 

Pietermaritzburg: Sunday 19 August


Online and bulk entries are now open for the Maritzburg SPAR Women’s 10/5km Challenge taking place in the KZN Capital on Sunday 19 August.


The Challenge starts at 8am for both the 10km and 5km in Princess Margaret Drive outside Maritzburg College and ends at The Oval Cricket Stadium in Alexandra Park. The course described as a ‘out-and-back’ race is expecting a field of 4,500 participants and will include some of the country’s top athletes, who will be vying to score points for their standings in the SPAR Grand Prix Series – part of the national competition within the SPAR Challenge for elite runners.


There are two options to enter: online at where one can either pay by EFT by 6 August or by credit card by 13 August. The second option is a Manual Entry at Race Registration on Friday 17 August and Saturday 18 August at The Oval cricket stadium in Alexandra Park subject to the limit of 4,500. 


If you are entering 10 or more people, you can email You will be sent information on how to manage your group entry. Time Freight will deliver your race packs and goodie bags directly to you team co-ordinator. All entries will only be processed once payment has been reflected and this form of entry can only be submitted electronically and closes on Monday 30 July.


Entries to the 10km distance are open from age 14 and to the 5km from age 9, the age restrictions being applicable on the day of the competition. Entry fees are R110 for the 10km licensed athletes and for the 5km runners. The entry fee for the non-licensed athletes in the 10km is R125. R2 from each entry will be presented to CHOC Pietermaritzburg (Childhood Cancer Foundation).


The time limits for the 10km is 2 hours and 30 minutes, while the cut off time for the 5km race is 1 hour and 30 minutes. There will be a 55 minute cut off at the 4.5km mark on the 10km route, participants who are lagging will be redirected onto the 5km route.


Race Registration will take place two days prior to the race. This is where competitors can register manually and collect their race numbers, t-shirts and goodie bags. The times are Friday 17 August from 10.00am to 05.00pm and on Saturday 18 August from 10.00am and 03.00pm.


All finishers will receive a breakfast pack on completion of their race. All female finishers of both distances who are present at the prize giving, stand a chance to win fabulous lucky draw prizes. All lucky draw prizes are due to be drawn after the final prize giving on race day.


For more information contact the race organisers on or visit the official race on or like the Facebook page.




SPAR KZN School Girls’ Hockey Challenge Grand Finals St Marys DSG, Kloof: 21 – 22 July

SPAR KZN School Girls’ Hockey Challenge

Grand Finals

St Marys DSG, Kloof: 21 – 22 July


After a flawless performance, Saints defended their title in magnificent style at the Eighth SPAR KZN School Girls’ Hockey Challenge, with a determined 3 – 0 win against St Anne’s College in the Grand Finals.


St Mary’s added to their impressive tally at the SPAR Grand Finals, making the 2018 win their fourth time raising the trophy in the history of this tournament and third consecutive win, having won the tournament in 2012, 2016, 2017 and now 2018, overtaking Durban Girls College who dominated in the years 2013, 2014, 2015.


St Mary’s hit the astro in top gear for the finals, dominating for majority of the game and not allowing the visiting St Anne’s to really get into the game.  Having previously played each other in the pool games where the scoreline was 2-1 to St Mary’s DSG.

All three goals were netted by Jodie Conolly who displayed superb skills with the stick. Her first goal was mid-way through the first half, in a short corner. The ball went to the castle at the top of the D, a flurry of perfection with a fake flick, spin and then pass finding Conolly who slotted in Saints first.


The second was off a shortie that went awry for St Anne’s, the ball nudged in by Conolly, scuttling past a stretching Reo Sachane – keeper for the visiting team, and finding the foot of a defender. Umpire on the spot deemed it deliberate and Conolly got directed to the penalty spot. Stepping up, she effortlessly found the back of the box for her team’s second point.


The third and final goal was also off a set play in another short corner. This time the ball moved left to a lurking Conolly who sliced the ball through the air into the top right corner of the goal. As the clock started to wind down, Cailie den Bakker made a phenomenal, exciting run. Breaking free from the St Anne’s defence, she made a solo effort only to see her attack sadly run out of steam, unable to score her teams fourth.


Captain for St Mary’s DSG, Max Hannan stated Saint’s weekend was amazing with incredible hockey being played all round. “We dedicate our win to Kiana Cormack who is currently playing in Algeria at the African Youth Olympic Qualifiers. And of course, to Amanda Ntuli who is forever in our hearts – we miss you and think of you often. And thank you to our coaches, you keep us going!”


Head of High School Sport for St Mary’s, Malcolm Reeders enthused, “Our weekend was incredible besides the magnificent out come, our girls thoroughly enjoyed the event and played some fantastic hockey only conceding one goal in their six games! We are very grateful that SPAR puts so much effort into school girls’ hockey”


Tournament Director, Les Galloway shared, “Eight years on, and we have only been here for two days and it feels like a big family. Our Grand Finals certainly are the climax of all our regionals.”


Varsity College continued their relationship with the SPAR KZN School Girls’ Hockey Challenge, awarding budding hockey players bursaries. Having travelled to all the regionals around KZN, they decided to offer two bursaries. The first went to Kerryn Swanepoel from Westville Girls’ High School and the second went to Itumeleng Noko from Ridge Park College.



1 St Mary’s DSG, 2 St Anne’s College, 3 Epworth School, 4 Durban Girls’ College, 5 Our Lady of Fatima, 6 Ferrum High School, 7 King Edward High School, 8 Amanzimtoti High School, 9 Felixton College, 10 Greytown High School





DSC_6039.jpg: Firing in a shot in the dying seconds, after a fantastic break Cailie den Bakker from St Mary’s DSG reverses an attempt to go 4 up against St Anne’s in the gold silver game at the SPAR KZN School Girls’ Hockey Challenge. St Mary’s DSG defended their title in superb style, taking the game 4 nil. Falling back to defend are St Anne’s players Sarah Church and Gabi van Hone.


Pic by Jonathan Burton


St Mary’s DSG – Highway Regional Winner - Gold (2012, 2016, 2017, 2018), Bronze (2011, 2013), Fourth (2015)