Maqoma s new duet in dance

Sunday World - - News - BOITUMELO TLHOAELE Les Nuits Tshawe, 7 Pil­lars. Lonely To­gether, Cargo Pre­cious,

DANCER and chore­og­ra­pher Gre­gory Maqoma has col­lab­o­rated with Spa­niard Roberto Oli­van for his lat­est of­fer­ing, which will be per­formed at Dance Um­brella.

The week-long dance fes­ti­val takes place at the Mar­ket Theatre’s Main Theatre from Au­gust 31 to Septem­ber 7.

The in­spi­ra­tion for the work, said Maqoma, came from the re­al­i­sa­tion that he and Oli­van, a friend of his, had sim­i­lar ex­pe­ri­ences in dance and shared a de­sire to grow the art form in their coun­tries.

He went back to Spain to de­velop dance, and I did the same in South Africa,” said Maqoma.

The two met 15 years ago when they were study­ing at the Per­form­ing Arts Re­search and Train­ing School in Brus­sels, Bel­gium.

Maqoma sub­se­quently started the Vuyani Dance Com­pany while Oli­van launched the En­clave Arts Del Movi­ment.

Maqoma and Oli­van used their sim­i­lar back­grounds as a ba­sis for their piece, but tak­ing on a more per­sonal ap­proach.

Both men are in their 40s and re­flect on how their per­cep­tion of dance has changed over the years.

We wanted to speak to our in­tu­ition, our in­ner voice and hu­man­ness.”

Maqoma said they wouldn’t have done jus­tice to the pro­duc­tion if they were younger, be­cause the di­a­logue be­tween the two dancers touches on their fears of grow­ing up, de­vel­op­ing into a new life cy­cle”.

Fact is, they still have strength to dance now, but as they ad­vance in years their age will limit their phys­i­cal mo­bil­ity.

So does this mean the au­di­ence will get to see a slow rhythm of move­ment?

Maqoma was adamant: No, you’ll get see the Greg that you know.”

The dance fes­ti­val, which forms part of the Arts Alive Fes­ti­val, will be mov­ing back to its orig­i­nal month of March next year, and Maqoma is elated.

I’m ex­cited about it. [Dance Um­brella] had its own flag­ship and part of its iden­tity was lost when it be­came part of Arts Alive,” he said. Other pro­duc­tions to look for­ward to in­clude

and which was a favourite dur­ing the Na­tional Arts Fes­ti­val in Gra­ham­stown last month.

It is di­rected by play­wright and ac­tor Syl­vaine Strike and chore­ographed by PJ Sab­bagha.

It deals with the jour­ney of Sarah Baart­man when she was taken from Cape Town to Lon­don on a ship.

There Baart­man was sub­jected to ex­ploita­tion, put on dis­play for the amuse­ment of whites. The story does not have a happy end­ing as Baart­man dies and her re­mains, in the name of science, are pre­served for dis­play.

Chore­og­ra­pher Thabo Rapoo’s work will also be some­thing to look out for as he brings on fea­tur­ing on a mixed bill pro­gramme that also in­cludes Luyanda Sidiya’s

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