For art to be relevant, artists must address the social and spiritual issues of our time. – Suzi Gablik
The premier theatre centre of the Western Cape once again leads the way in addressing just such an issue this coming month with a focus on humanity, women and disability. Not only is the upcoming Festival to be a celebration of the bravest souls of our society, but a serious attempt to tackle the challenges they face.
In a powerful cry for action, the theme of the 11th Artscape Women’s Humanity Arts Festival (AWHAF) is ‘Uniting Cape Town against Gender-Based Violence’.
Women’s Day on Wednesday 9 August will see the iconic Women’s Humanity Walk from St George’s Cathedral to the Artscape – with men and children encouraged to join Cape Town’s women to wave banners and placards condemning gender-based violence – followed by the annual Humanity Lunch in the Artscape tunnel.
And beyond these key events there is still something for everyone in the 11 day Festival programme, from the practical and positive to the light-hearted and joyous.
Against a backdrop of works by sculptor Evette Weyers, the Artscape is set to host numerous book launches, a fashion show, chaired conversations, workshops, the ever popular Story Café, and the option for visitors to access free health screenings, legal advice and counselling.
Theatre productions in the Festival include the Indoni Dance, Arts and Leadership Academy’s much-anticipated Ikhaya, the Absolutely Fabulous Drag Show, and Quanita Adams in a limited run of Nadia Davids’ critically-acclaimed piece At Her Feet, which combines movement, song, poetry and monologues to explore the issues of Identity, Islamophobia and Islamic Feminism through the eyes of four Muslim women in Cape Town.
Musical performances will be given by Karin Kortje and eight vocal groups, including a 120-member mass choir, while all Cape Town’s women are invited to be part of The Everywoman Project in the creation of a textile shweshwe artwork by sewers and non-sewers alike.
Many of these events are free for the public, and everyone – men, women and children are encouraged to join in and show their support.
Tickets for the festival’s productions are available from Computicket or Artscape Dial-A-Seat on 021 421 7695. Discounts are available for students, seniors and block bookings