I AM ALSO: For Cape Town’s young men

I AM ALSO: what it takes to be seen, felt and heard as a young South African man.

Theatre Arts Admin Collective, KleiSand Teater and Sonke Gender Justice is offering an exceptional double bill of performances paired with a conversation around what it means to be a man in South Africa today. This programme will take place each morning from 13 to 24 March 2017 at the Theatre Arts Admin Collective in Observatory, Cape Town. It is designed for male learners from Grade 9 to 12. The I AM ALSO programme is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for parents, teachers and our young men to share in a guided open discussion on the complexities of manhood in Cape Town. In a country where the incidence of violence against women and children is on the increase across all socio-economic groups, it becomes essential for young men to understand their attitudes and actions, to examine their perceptions of themselves, to actively engage with each other and their elders about vulnerability and expectations, and to feel able and willing to contribute to breaking the cycle. But, most importantly, these young men need to discover a way of being for themselves, a way that is different to the social reality around them. Both productions on the bill, Ubuze Bam and Stof Rooi, investigate manhood and each scooped awards at the Cape Town Fringe Festival in 2016. This extraordinary investigation into what it means to be a man will make an enriching school outing.

Built on the tenets of affordability, inclusivity and accessibility, the Theatre Arts Admin Collective is a vibrant home for local theatre practitioners – a place where they can create work, develop skills, perform, engage in dialogue and meet and work with theatre practitioners who come from diverse backgrounds, whether cultural, social, and economic or simply in skill and experience. Described as the rehearsal space of choice, the Theatre Arts Admin Collective is dedicated to creating the right environment for artists and theatre to flourish. In an industry which is culturally divided, dominated by a few voices and vastly under-supported financially, both through patronage and funding, the Theatre Arts Admin Collective strives to support, enable and provide opportunity for artists to continue developing skills, creating work and generating income. Open to fresh ideas and up for experimentation based on current trends in economic thinking, the Theatre Arts Admin Collective is an organic model and successful training ground for re-conceptualising what a theatre institution, in South Africa, can be and how it can sustain itself.


The Programme:

Performance Ubuze Bam (50 mins)

9:30 – 10:20

Directed by Thando Doni (winner of the Fresh Fringe Gold Award)

Presented by the Theatre Arts Admin Collective

This moving new work by director Thando Doni follows four young men on parole, each of whom have had vastly different prison experiences. Their tales speak of the power of being and the ability to transform one’s life. Doni used a very organic approach, working directly with the young men, in the creation of Ubuze Bam. These interactions formed the basis of the play, as direct quotes were sewn into the piece’s soliloquies and monologues. Ubuze Bam was first shown at Theatre Arts Admin Collective in April 2016, and has been described as a work that needs to be seen by everyone.


Performance Stof Rooi (40 mins)

10:50 – 11:30

Directed by Jason Jacobs (winner of the Fresh Fringe Bronze Award)

Presented by KleiSand Teater and Theatre Arts Admin Collective

Stof Rooi is a solo show performed by Dustin Beck. This piece will make its KKNK debut this year as Jason Jacobs is KKNK 2017’s New Voice. Imbued with intricate foot work and the magic of dust, Stof Rooi explores a boy running – from his name and from his bloodline, towards a future filled with more promise, hope and meaning. Jacobs and Beck have tapped into the haunting dreamscape between the world of the ancestors and present day reality. The sound and movement speak to the ethereal space of the ancestors, while the dialogue portrays the real world of school systems and gang initiations. Both worlds are fighting to occupy his body, and the boy’s fight is against both; to prove himself beyond a culture and heritage that both seem to have no future. Jacobs reveals a quintessential aspect of the work when he comments, “Stof Rooi is an honest portrayal of life as a secondary school learner. Every time I see it, my body is turned upside down.” This work was originally performed at the Obs Family Festival in March 2016.


I AM ALSO: what it takes to be seen, felt and heard as a young South African man – a discussion chaired by Sonke Gender Justice

11:30 – 12:30

A guided conversation with the artists and young audience chaired by Sonke Gender Justice.

Discussions prompted by the plays will tackle:

  • Becoming invisible
  • The school system and its impact on self-confidence and identity
  • Feeling at risk, making choices and living with consequences
  • Masculinity and vulnerability
  • Understanding one’s cultural heritage and how to break cycles of perception
  • Forgiveness
  • Race and Social Justice

This programme enriches and links to the academic curriculum in various ways. There are a number of subjects which will benefit directly from this programme.

Dramatic Arts/Dance:

  • Opportunity to see original and award-winning South African theatre.

Life Orientation:

  • Engagement with issues around masculine identity in a real South African context.

Language:

  • Language enrichment for 2nd language Afrikaans and isiXhosa students

I AM ALSO Double Bill Schools Programme will run from 13 to 24 March 2017 from 9:30 to 12:30.


Tickets:

The ticket price includes both performances and a chaired discussion.

R57 per person if a minimum of 80 learners and R75 per person if a minimum of 60 learners.

Ticket price is negotiable depending on the school and what the young people can afford.

Transport can be provided for schools in need with thanks to the HCI Foundation and Golden Arrow Buses.

Theatre Arts Admin Collective: Methodist Church Hall | cnr Milton Road and Wesley Street | Observatory | 7925 | Cape Town

Director: Caroline Calburn – calburn@mweb.co.za

Tel: 021 447 3683

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