Jazzart Dancers Set to Fly in BHABHA at Artscape Theatre, 17 July

The Jazzart Company and Trainees
The Jazzart Company and Trainees

The new Jazzart work, BHABHA, will showcase the current graduates of the Jazzart Training Programme, when the young company steps up to show their metal after two years of training, onstage at the Artscape Theatre from 17 - 19 July.

BHABHA - which means "to fly" in isiXhosa - has been choreographed by Moeketsi Koena and directed by Jazzart's new resident artist, Jackï Job. Focusing on the themes of democracy and freedom, the production captures the joy, excitement and boldness of this group of dancers and enables them to emerge and fly into independence. It reflects the beauty of their youth, spirits and limitless potential.

The contemporary choreography of Moeketsi Koena, director of the Inzalo Dance and Theatre Company in Johannesburg and associate director for Madagascar International Dance Festival, I'Trotra, promises vigorous entertainment that is not to be missed. The unparalleled ability of "dynamite exploding" is descriptive of Koena's contributions to the dance companies with whom he has worked over the past decade. He has choreographed both in South Africa and Europe, for Pretoria Technikon in Gauteng, the Artisisjok/Nultwintig Youth Organization in Amsterdam and many others.

Koena can be counted as one of a rare breed of performing artists. His palate for creating innovatively is influenced by the humble nuances of day-to-day life in South Africa, enabling him to deliver a unique product that is unmistakably his own. His fusion of South African popular culture with Western contemporary dance forms and experimentation with the variables of dance in the genres of Kwaito and Hip Hop within the vortex of pulsating African dance, has brought dancers to the cutting edge of dance theatre around the world.

Lewellyn Afrika, Lee-Joel Bosman, Lusindiso Dibela and Yaseen Manuel
Lewellyn Afrika, Lee-Joel Bosman,
Lusindiso Dibela and Yaseen Manuel

"My contribution to BHABHA, a multi-disciplinary work titled "Tracing Past 2 Future - Tsoha", wishes to entertain, inform and educate people on self-appreciation", Koena says. In the piece, the dancers have translated their personal stories into several vignettes that reflect on how their past engages with their present, and how their interpretation and commitment to events affect their future. Movements from street dance styles, African contemporary, as well as self-composed texts have influenced and clarified the work. Tsoha (meaning "awakening" in Sesotho) aims to convey the individual journeys of a group of people, connected in dance, at a pivotal stage in taking hold of their dreams.

The 2014 trainees are are Katlego Moncho, Lee-Joel Bosman, Lewellyn Afrika, Lusanda Dayimani, Lusindiso Dibela, Nichellé Linnert, Nkosinathi Mngomezulu, Nkemiseng Khena, Tamsyn Spannenberg and Yaseen Manuel. They will be joined by two company members, Sinazo Bokolo-Bruns and Amy-Kay Klaasen.

BHABHA opens at the Artscape Theatre on Thursday, 17 July at 20:15 for 4 performances only. Tickets at R100 per ticket are obtainable from Computicket or Artscape Dial-a-Seat on 021-421 7695. Block bookings of 10 or more tickets cost R80 per ticket. Pensioners and students qualify for R80 tickets.

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