Ooh la la, France-SA turn on the charm

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IOL SpoekCultural

Helen Herimbi

For the first time since France began its reciprocal arts and culture seasons with countries such as Brazil, India and Japan, it’s now the turn of our very own Mzansi.

The inaugural French-South African Season brought with it, a certain je ne sais quoi.

From music, to cuisine, dance and other art forms, the collaborations between the two countries and the showcasing of the different cultures have made parts of Jozi, Cape Town and Durban more vibrant.

This month is no different.

November is the final month in a year-long programme that celebrated contemporary dance, gave South Africans an opportunity to make their own movies in Michel Gondry’s Home Movie Factory in the Maboneng district of Joburg and roughly 100 performances, initiatives and projects.

Next week, you can catch up with experts and people interested in the sights and sounds at a seminar on the Preservation and Promotion of Audio Visual Cultural Heritage at the the Fugard Theatre in Cape Town.

On November 13 and 14, the audiovisual cultural heritage of France and South Africa will be looked at via presentations of years of research and modern audiovisual technology.

Before that, you can sample the sounds of the City of Love and its surroundings at The Glory Of French Music in Gauteng.

Taking place at the Roodepoort Theatre on November 11 and at the Soweto Theatre on November 18, the concerts are a treat for lovers of choral and classical French music.

The shows feature members of Opera Africa and are presented by the Rand Symphony Orchestra. Expect to hear renditions of the work of Bizet, Offenbach and Saint-Saëns’ Piano Concerto No 2.

Finally, you can catch up with the likes of Zimbabwean musical icon, Oliver Mtukudzi, South African-Canadian soul singer, Zaki Ibrahim (with Mr Sakitumi), French electro gypsy band, DJ Click Band, Freshlyground, Spoek Mathambo and more at the Cape Town World Music Festival on November 9 and 10.

The festival will take place in the city centre and surroundings and features a plethora of sounds that will appeal to anyone who is looking for an out-of-the-box experience.

The World Music Festival is in Cape Town on Friday and Saturday. The Glory of French Music takes place at the Roodepoort Theatre on Sunday and at the Soweto Theatre on November 18. The audiovisual cultural heritage presentation takes place at the Fugard Theatre, Cape Town, November 13 and 14. See www.france-southafrica.com

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