The Centre for Creative Arts (CCA) within the College of Humanities hosts the landmark 23rd JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience in its second digital edition from 24 August to 5 September.
‘The festival has Border Crossings as its theme, turning the spotlight on dance-makers, dance companies and performance-based artists who, in some articulated way, resonate with the ideas of Border Crossings – be these geographical, emotional, physical, spiritual of performative,’ said UKZN dance lecturer and Artistic Director of the show, Dr Lliane Loots.
‘We are proud to host a digital space that nurtures and supports a serious artistic engagement with South African, African and international contemporary dance and dance makers.’
Associate Professor and director of the Institute for Creative Arts at the University of Cape Town Jay Pather features as the 2021 JOMBA! legacy artist and will open this year’s festival.
To complement this, Durban photographer Val Adamson offers a digital photographic retrospective exhibition of her work with Siwela Sonke featuring over 100 photos.
The South African Crossings platform features The Garage Dance Ensemble who presents Gat innie Grond, Wond in my Siel (Hole in the Ground, Wound in my Soul), choreographed by the remarkable young dance-maker, Byron Klassen.
Cape Town’s Yaseen Manuel is the UKZN’s School of the Arts/Mellon Foundation’s Artist in Residence who will work in conjunction with JOMBA! and the Drama and Performance Studies Programme to create two screen dance films with Durban’s much-loved Flatfoot Dance Company.
JOMBA! is also collaborating with the Vrystaat Arts Festival, Georgina Thomson and New Dance Festival as well as presenting films by Sylvester Thamsanqa Majela (NEVERLAND) and Sizakele Mdi (Dust to Dust).
Said Loots: ‘One of JOMBA!’s key mandates has been, and continues to be, connecting with our continent in offering partnerships and collaborations with some of Africa’s most prominent, cutting edge and inspiring dance makers. In this edition we are delighted to have commissioned screen dance films in our African Crossings platform from Marcel Gbeffa of Benin, Gaby Saranouffi of Madagascar, Robert Ssempijja of Uganda, and Bernardo Guiamba (aka Pak Ndjamena) of Mozambique.’
The European and American Crossings feature the historic New York-based Limón Dance Company as well as the Birmingham-based ACE Music and Dance with their essence of flamenco, kathak, martial arts and ACE’s inimitable Afro-fusion style. Hannah Ma (hannahmadance) of Germany presents ONDA – Into the Unknown, a magnificent research type performance and art space production.Sweden’s Cullberg presents a remarkable screen dance film On Earth I’m Done – Mountains, which is Part 1 of an archaic-futuristic diptych in which the audience is transported to a place torn out of the conventional space-time continuum. She Poems created by Spanish dancer/choreographer Aïda Colemenero Dïaz is a series of beautiful short screen dance films made during her on-going travels in Africa, and these will close the festival.
On the Indian Crossings platform – with support from the Durban Indian Consulate’s Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre – the Calcutta-based Pickle Factory Dance Foundation, will showcase eight specially curated short dance films that speak to the zeitgeist of contemporary Indian dance-making.
The Durban Digital Edge 2021 Commissions feature six Durban-based dance makers who are beginning to make waves on the local dance scene – they are Sabelo Cele, Thobile Maphanga, Nqubeko ‘Cue’ Ngema, Cameron S. Govender, Aphelele Nyawoso, and Snethemba Khuzwayo.
The JOMBA! Open Horizons platform provides an opportunity for dance makers to present their digital/dance film work. Adjudicators David April, Tracey Saunders, Clare Craighead and Shanelle Jewnarain have assessed the 30 submissions from across Africa for the festival and a selection of these will be screened.
JOMBA! Talks Dance: Conversations that Cross Borders features four live conversations with Jay Pather, Alfred Hinkel of the Garage Dance Ensemble in South Africa, Hannah Ma of Germany, and Vikram Iyengar and Kunal Chakraborty of the Pickle Factory Dance Foundation in Calcutta.
JOMBA! Forging Alliances is an industry support programme curated by Thobile Maphanga, which aims to provide dance- makers with industry-specific information and includes a panel on social media and publicity, technical tips on production and music copyright.
The ever-popular daily JOMBA! Khuluma Blog and Digital Newspaper facilitated by Clare Craighead involves a two-week residency of dance writing and dance criticism through a series of closed webinars/seminars for graduate dance students.