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Friday, August 13, 2021


What to watch on the National Arts Festival Fringe Live this weekend.

Is’Thatha Dance Project's intense, melodic and moody piece Initiation skillfully dances us through the storyline of a young man's struggle to exorcise his demons.

Verloren by Spark in the Dark, is a whimsical animation using paper that reinterprets the Greek myth of Alcyone and Ceyx, and follows the story of a young couple living on the Verlorenvlei, where the river meets the sea.

AFDA Johannesburg's short film The Core is a technically complex piece largely shot against a green screen and will have audience members questioning whether the shoot was done on location or not due to the flawless joined execution of the cinematography and the post-production.

Brazilian show Molhados&Secos|Wet&Dry by Cia Paraladosanjos is an almost word-free physical theatre journey through four scenes, directed by four different internationally-renowned directors, that poignantly reflects on the human capacity to overcome obstacles and survive extreme situations.

Mobile Inertia by Siphumeze Khundayi was described by The Critter reviewer Nondumiso Msimanga as “a gentle gem of existential crisis, crafted with disarming charm”. It's a piece that delves into the mental health complexities of not being able to move and the subsequent damage to our psyche.

Love and Race Productions took their award for Ruth a story of a young girl who, because she grows up as an orphan, never learns to understand what it means to be loved. The work interrogates this self-perpetuating cycle of lovelessness and search for the Mother.

TORINAOSHI by Tsukuba Indy is directed by Osaka native Yusuke Kitaguchi, whose short film Baby in the Dark won the Osaka 48 Hour Film Festival in 2017 and was later screened at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival in 2018. Director Kitaguchi’s debut feature film Two On The Edge is currently awaiting major international film festival selection. TORINAOSHI was created in response to the rising wave of right-wing hate groups throughout Japan, where there has been an explosion in such organisations over the past five years. The film seeks to address this in an entertaining format that brings both left and right into one story, and contributes to providing young folks and netizens with a counterbalance to the spread of hate and anti-immigrant messaging.

In (extra) ordinary, (un) usual, six actors tell the story of a unique individual. No two life stories are the same, and these interesting characters certainly prove this theory. A hybrid theatre-film event that combines the best of both worlds, director Faeron Wheeler has used the intimate nature of film, while keeping to her theatre roots for performance style.

Old Soul Waiting by Mabu Art Foundation explores how ancestral calling is misdiagnosed as a form of mental illness and combines narrative and dance into a fascinating experimental experience from Slindile Mthembu.

Buya by Mathetha Dances is an exuberant celebration the language of the spirit with the power to impact and uplift people. It tells the story of healing through the power of community and demonstrates how togetherness carries the energy of dance.

Beyond the Standard Bank Ovation Awards are plenty of other exciting shows that may just appeal to you. A virtual experience of the real Fringe, do what you would do at the Festival and take a chance on a Fringe show or two!

The Fringe Live is on until August 31, 2021, with ticket prices starting at R30. Don't forget that 90% of the revenue goes directly to the artists.

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