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Friday, March 18, 2016


(Gcina Shange (Redefining.. Home –work project). Photo copyright DCP)

A momentous event for dance practitioners will be taking place in Durban next week. Marking the dawn of its 20th Anniversary, The Floating Outfit Project will present Phomolongtrain-Station from the March 21 to 27. This convergence of four global projects is the culmination of a two-year process of creative, interrogative collaboration with local dance makers, continental counterparts, networks of International presenters, artists, festivals, theatre and spaces.

Phomolongtrain-Station brings together four streams of critical projects, centred around its seminal, Press: Reset residency. Now in its second year, this is a research, re-educating process for local dance makers, which puts them in reach of critical circuits on the continent and beyond.

Criticality and necessity connect Durban and Kisangani in the vital, Redefining… Home-work project. This continental exchange project is initiated and co-produced by the DRC’s Studios Kabako & The Floating Outfit Project, under the mentorship of Faustin Linyekula and Boyzie Cekwana.

Phomolongtrain-Station will mark the third phase of this project, which started in September 2014 in Kisangani DRC. Four Congolese and five South African dancers form the core of this project. Four of these artists, Michel Kiyombo, Papy Ebotani (DRC), Tegan Peacock and Sifiso Majola (RSA) will develop new creations during the first few weeks of March, then present their work in an open rehearsal format for public viewing and feedback during the week (March 21 to 27).

An exciting prospect for Durban is the presence of the Shared Spaces Network. This is a network of art practitioners, theatre and festival presenters who come from as afield as Switzerland, Portugal, Germany, Slovenia, etc. They will spend the week witnessing, engaging and exchanging with the artists, as well as visiting local spaces of artistic practice.

Finally, One Space makes its own presence in the city. This is a Shared Spaces Network initiative, which invites 14 artists from three major global regions, namely: Africa, The Middle East and Europe. These artists have already spent time developing projects in residencies in Ramallah, Kinshasa and Lisbon. Phomolongtrain-Station will be the final phase in the series. Their work will be assessed by a Shared Spaces Network steering group, for the purposes of determining possibilities for co-producing some of the work. Co-produced work may be presented in International Festivals.

The non-ticketed public showings for Redefining… Home-work will be at the Beer Hall, the Pump House, the KZNSA and a soon to be identified street intersection. Showings will be from March 22 to 26.

Phomolongtrain-Station and Redefining… Home-work are supported by Pro Helvetia, the Swiss Arts Council and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation. The Shared Spaces Network supports Phomolongtrain-Station. The Arts & Culture Department of eThekwini Municipality supports Phomolongtrain-Station with spaces and logistics.

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