The National Arts Festival is currently taking place virtually for the first time since its inception in 1973.
This historical moment kicked off on Thursday, June 25, as revellers are enjoying the festivities from the comfort of their homes.
The online celebration of the arts got underway on Friday, June 26, and aside from a few technical glitches, the festival remained steady in showcasing everything set out for the day.
Taking place this Friday is The Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Festival, that has taken place in Makhanda for the past 28 years.
Students get to interact with the performing jazz musicians, who hold workshops and discussions with attendees. This year, the SBNYJF students have access to the online Jazz Festival, and they also have opportunities to meet the musicians online for discussions.
The Q&A session is a free webinar scheduled with Spha Mdlalose Sisonke Xonti as Sakhile Sima moderators.
Also taking place this evening is a special performance by Sakhile Simani (trumpet), Bokani Dyer (piano), Nhlanhla Radebe (bass), Tumi Mogorosi (drums), who pay homage to their roots while propelling the jazz art form.
The 2020 National Arts Festival Featured Artist is indigenous musician, Madosini Latozi Mpahleni, also known as Madosini. A series of 11 episodes (one released each day of NAF) features Madosini performing in varied settings – from grand stages to intimate rooms, solo and in conversation with other musicians.
The first episode is available this Friday.
Another show to look forward to is The Solo Ball with Tandile Mbatsha. His work is currently pushes gender boundaries.
The phrase “Intyantyambo Iyaphuma Engxondorheni” can be translated to describe a metaphor for a flower blooming on infertile land that is the mantra he holds as a method of perceiving the questions, how are LGBTQI+ people emerging from the margins and rules of society? How do queer people conceive joy in a society plagued with hate crimes? How do young LGBTQI+ bodies self-actualise?
Mbatsha has two offerings on the National Arts Festival, the pre-recorded work features five young people who use monologue and movement to address these enquiries.
The show takes place at 8pm.
Taking place on Saturday, June 27, is The Very Big Comedy Show featuring six of South African’s finest and funniest comedians. Hosted by Rob van Vuuren, Lindy Johnson, Alan Committie, Kagiso Lediga, Robby Collins and Tumi Morake share stories of their worst gigs ever.
A recording of the live event will be available from 27 June.
Access all Content on the NAF & Jazz programme from the premiere date until Thursday, July 16. Daily passes are R80.00.