Contemporary dance at its most compelling will be showcased in Jazzart Dance Theatre’s latest full-length work, "Waiting for Rain".
Choreographed by Mziyanda Mancam, Ina Wichterich-Mogane and Jacqueline Manyaapelo, "Waiting for Rain" features Jazzart’s trademark fusion of contemporary dance genres performed with their celebrated mix of athleticism and technical prowess.
Manyaapelo, Jazzart’s artistic director explains that the premise for the full-length work was based on the idea of rain symbolising rebirth. “As Jazzart, we would like to attempt to be ‘Rainmakers’, as it were,” she explains. “We are excited by the way this new work has evolved and believe it signifies new life and a release of both artistic and emotional energy.”
It will be danced by members of the company and graduates from the third-year class of Jazzart Young Adult Training and Job Creation Programme to a combination of live and recorded music composed by Thandile Mandela and Mthwakazi and performed under the musical direction of Ntone Edjabe.
"Waiting for Rain" marks the third time Mandela has performed a live musical score for the company. Mandela, who holds a Masters in African Music from UCT, has gained international renown for her knowledge of traditional music and her ability to master a wide range of instruments. Mthwakazi is known for her ethereal, yet earthy, vocals and is also no stranger to Jazzart, having appeared in one of the company’s seminal works, Guardian of the Flame. She has performed throughout South Africa, as well as in London and Paris.
“We are incredibly excited about performing to Thandile and Mthwakazi’s evocative and soulful music. The chance to perform to their live music is a privilege and also brings a different energy that helps connect the dancers to the audience,” says Manyaapelo.
Manyaapelo reports that all 22 dancers are fighting fit and ready to give the performance of a lifetime. “We would like the audience to leave with a sense of journeying with us in the new direction that we’re headed, as well as affirming a belief in our training and performance.’’ she says. “Over and above that, we want the audience to be transported and moved by the stories told by our dancers and their bodies.”
"Waiting for Rain" opens at the Artscape Theatre on Friday September 16 at 20:15 and is followed with shows at 15:00 and 20:15 on Saturday September 17, and at 18:00 on Sunday, September 18. Further performances take place at 20:15 on September 21 and 22.
Tickets are R100 or R50 for block bookings of 20 or more. Book at Computicket (0861 915 8000) or call Artscape’s Dial-a Seat on 021 421 7695.
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