A host of KwaZulu-Natal productions are being staged on the Fringe at this year’s National Arts Festival in Grahamstown. Check them out if you’re heading to the fest.
Catch Arach-no-phobia , presented by Dance Direction International & YoungStar Production at Graeme College at 5.30 pm on July 6, 2 pm on July 7 and 8 and 10 am on July 9.
Choreographed by Des van der Spuy and Gabriel Masango, this eye-catching dance piece is built around the premise that we are all spiders and nothing is beyond our reach. Masango and Helen Noll head the high-energy cast of committed young dancers. Tickets are R40 (R36 concessions).
The Rickshaw Collective in Durban will be staging Bayhead, directed by Adam Dore, at PJs at 10 am and 8.30 pm on July 9 and 1.30 pm on July 10.
The work, choreographed by and featuring Shelby Strange, tells the story of people who breathe life into the creative-arts industry and drink air from Durban’s southern basin.
A gritty tale of steel, smoke and pigeons that uses the body in motion to animate an intricate set.
Tickets are R60 (R54 concessions).
The SASAD KZN Dance Company will be staging Mixed Motion at Graeme College at 8.30 pm on July 5, 2 pm on July 6, and 10.30 am and 9.30 pm on July 8.
Choreographers explore the synergies of ballet, Spanish, jazz, contemporary, tap and hip-hop in this powerful performance that will awaken the dancer within your soul.
Tickets are R40 (R36 concessions).
Eden College in Durban is presenting Ignition on Vicky’s upper lawns at 5.30 pm on July 4 and July 5.
In this work, the Keepers of Balance travel from the four corners of the universe igniting life. Piece by piece they construct Earth’s frame, filling it with light, sound and motion.
Ignition is directed and choreographed by Shelby Strange. Admission is free.
Umsindo Theatre Projects will be staging Brothers at the Masonic Front at 8 pm on July 2, 10 pm on July 3, 4 pm on July 4 and 6 pm on July 5.
The story takes patrons through the journey and life experiences of twin brothers Goso and Siso, who grew up together but end up as enemies.
The death of Goso, who was a well-known politician, changes everything. He comes back every night as a ghost to try to help Siso, a hitman, to change his life.
Goso is stuck between worlds and he can’t go on until he fulfils his mission to make things right with his twin brother.
The play is written, directed and performed by Musawenkosi and Bongumusa Shabalala.
Tickets are R40, with concessions at R36.
Aaron McIlroy and Lisa Bobbert deliver a kaleidoscope of side-splitting scenarios about lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy and pride in Seven Deadly Sins at the Scout Hall at 2.30 pm on July 2, 6 pm on July 3, 10 pm on July 4, noon on July 5 and 2 pm on July 6. Tickets are R90.
Another must-see at the Scout Hall is Clinton Marius’s fabulous satire B!*ch Stole my Doek, starring Shona Johnson. The play tells the tale of warring neighbours, with unexpected results.
It will be staged at noon on July 2, 2 pm on July 3, 10 am on July 4, 8.30 pm on July 5, 2.30 pm and 9 pm on July 7 and 10 am on July 8. Tickets are R75 (R68 concessions).
The award-winning two-hander Dear Breeder, is at St Andrew’s Studio 2 at 8 pm on July 2, noon on July 3, 6 pm on July 4, noon on July 5, 10 pm on July 6 and 10 am on July 7. This musical comedy is as absurd as the art of parenting itself.
Four uniquely insane, instantly recognisable South African mothers encounter Darth Vader, the underwear fairy and a staple-gun wielding baby Jesus. Directed by Iain “Ewok” Robinson, the play is written and performed by Karen Logan and Kasia Vosloo.Tickets are R65, with concessions at R59.
McIlroy will also be appearing in The Ranga, a whacky comedy that looks at prejudice through the eyes of a man tormented with pigmentation issues.
Directed by Steven Stead and co-starring Andy Turrell, The Ranga is at the Scout Hall at 9 pm on July 2, noon on July 3, 4 pm on July 4, 6.30 pm on July 5 and 10.30 pm on July 6. Tickets are R90.
Eden College Durban is presenting The Washerwoman and the Moon at Vicky’s at 10 am on July 3, 2 pm on July 4 and noon on July 6.
Have you ever wished you were on the moon? Join Zama on her search for Mamma Moon. Be befuddled by the Four-headed Creature. Be in awe of Akkera the Serpent and amused by the hilarious Sun Sisters. Fantastical theatre for kids by kids, written and directed by Jean van Elden. Tickets are R40 (R36 concessions).
Midlands diva Cat Simoni will be performing in two shows at the National Arts Festival.
In Cat Sings Ella, she performs the music of Ella Fitzgerald from the early Harlem years through the Decca and Verve recordings to the breakthrough A-Tisket, A-Tasket and her Cole Porter and Duke Ellington Songbooks.
Cat Sings Ella, which is directed by Paul Spence, is at the Albany Cabaret Club at 9.30 pm on July 2, noon on July 3, 2.30 pm on July 4, 4.30 pm on July 5, 9 pm on July 6 and 12.30 pm on July 8.
Tickets are R100 (R90 concessions).
Simoni will also perform The Way We Were!, a show packed full of beautiful Barbra Streisand standards, from The Way We Were to Woman in Love.
Written and directed by Spence, the show is at the Albany Cabaret Club at 2.30 pm on July 2, 7 pm on July 3, 7.30 pm on July 4, 9.30 am on July 5, 4.30 pm on July 7 and 7.30 pm on July 8. Tickets are R100 (R90 concessions).
The KwaZulu-Natal Youth Orchestra will present KZNYO Classic Blast in the Transnet Great Hall at 2.30 pm on July 8 and July 9.
Take the family and enjoy a fun, entertaining presentation of classical and contemporary orchestral music performed by the orchestra under the baton of Lyk Temmingh.
The concert includes work from Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Johannes Brahms, Paul Desmond, Edvard Grieg, MIkhail Ippolitov-Ivanov, Henry Mancini, Jacques Offenbach, Sergei Prokofiev, Shanjeet Teeluck, Meghan Trainor and Lyndsay Johnston, the Soweto String Quartet and Igor Stravinsky.
Tickets are R40 (R36 concessions).
Hailing from the heart of Zululand, Qadasi and Maqhinga are an acoustic duo reviving the powerful sounds of traditional maskandi music. Catch them at The Vic at 7 pm on July 4 and at the Rhodes Club at 8 pm on July 5 and 9 pm on July 6. Tickets are R65 (R59 concessions).
Bookings are open and can be made via the website:http://www.nationalartsfestival.co.za. Ticketing call centre: 0860 002 004
Pick up a Festival programme and booking kit from selected Standard Bank and Exclusive Books. The full programme is online athttp://www.nationalartsfestival.co.za