national Arts Festival Banner

Friday, July 8, 2011


A very creative way of commenting on the B.E.E system in South Africa... (Review by Sifiso Sikhakhane)

Gavin Krastin’s physical theatre piece, Sub- has been shaking the opinions of many at this year’s National Arts Festival.

This site-specific work is part of the Intraceit programme which recently won itself the 2011 Standard Bank Ovation award. I am still trying to understand what really goes on inside this young artist’s head. One sits there thinking, “how does one think of such things?”

Sub- takes place in nine different sites at Nombulelo Secondary High School, one of the under-privileged schools in Grahamstown. The designs (which are a must-see), the movement language and the way Krastin chose to use the sites makes you think deeper about the political and social conditions in South Africa, or perhaps the Eastern Cape, which is one of the poorest provinces in the country.

I'll avoid going into detail as to what takes place in these sites or what one can expect to see. However, I do need to highlight what really stood out for me.

As you walk into the business studies classroom at Nombulelo, you immediately step on shredded paper, before noticing the performer who has ties tied up around his neck. All you hear is the sound of bees which are displayed on the overhead projection screen. A very creative way of commenting on the B.E.E system in South Africa...

The list is endless, but it is only fair that I allow you to experience Krastin’s talent at its best for yourself.

Catch the last performance of Sub- on July 7 at Nombulelo Secondary High School. Transport will be provided from the Rhodes drama department complex 15 minutes before the performance time. – Sifiso Sikhakhane