The Star, August 2 2005
by Mtumeleng Motuba
August is the month dedicated to celebrating the women of our country. Numerous events are being planned throughout South Africa. One such event in the Ansister Constellation 2005 which is a celebration of both past and present women. Most of the events will run at Constitution Hill from the eve of Women's Day (8 August) until August 13.
Both visual and performance arts will be represented. Women from all walks of life will participate in art exhibitions, theatre, poetry, music and dance. The exhibition at Constitution Hill will open on the first night of the festival.
Another interesting performance, is Gumcion, which opens on the same night. This show features women performing gumboot dancing to opera.
This dance piece is directed by poet and performer Napo Masheane. The cast from her hit play Colour of the Diaspora will share the stage with the dancers as they sing a few songs.
Colour of the Diaspora opens on Women's Day at the Hillbrow Theatre. Napo Masheane has recently returned from the Grahamstown arts Festival. "I am happy that this show will now be seen in Johannesburg," she says. "I was very happy with the response we got in Grahamstown. But we had to re-work the show because the American cast has gone back home. I think that it still carries the same message. This is the perfect time to put on this show as it is a celebration of women. This is the time when we as women need to affirm each other. Although we should celebrate women everyday – I suppose this will do."
Before the show there will be a march from Constitution Hill to the Hillbrow Theatre. This venue has been selected because many people do not know of its existence.
Women's month art exhibitions include John Moore's the Dream Burden Series at the Gordart Gallery and the Kevin Collins-curated Foam at Moja Modern. Numerous workshops will be running throughout the week. One important workshop is the community theatre Hlumelo project, which uses theatre as a form of therapy. its aim is to explore solutions to problems faced in our country.
This well-rounded week is both education and in the true spirit of Womens' Month.
Online publication at www.tonight.co.za
[webweaver's note: due to lack of funds, Napo Masheane and her team pulled out in the last few days and was replaced by Nhotemba Sulupa and the Alexandria Community Project. Kevin Collin's 'Foam' at the Moja Modern also did not come ro fruition.]
Posted 08 November 2005, www.face.org.za, author: Mtumeleng Motuba.