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His is a humour that is clean and nostalgic, reminding us for instance of how our mothers would slap us all the way out of Pick’n’Pay. Palmer’s ability to take us back is where he really shines.

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The traditional African songs ‘Mela Wami’ and ‘Hlonolofatsa’ are jubilant recitals that came close to bringing a number of audience members to their feet in song and dance. While a few of the ‘opera traditionalists’ were aggrieved by the ululations from the audience, most found it to be an absolutely apt response to a sensational performance.

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The music accentuated the city idyll perfectly as Original Swimming Party’s mind-wandering tunes opened the event on Wednesday or Rose Lombard’s dreamy, jazz-mixed DJ set finished it off on Friday. More exciting though, was the party at Side Show on Thursday.

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Known throughout SA and abroad for her extraordinarily atmospheric wildlife and landscape paintings, Stokhuyzen, using her typical palette knife technique, captures the beauty of what she sees with an exceptional ability to highlight the colours, shapes and lines found in nature. Her paintings are astonishing interpretations, skillfully extracting the patterns that encompass the essence of the scene in front of her. The result is a truly fantastic visual feast of scintillating colours and symmetrical, recurring natural patterns, which radiate loudly with life, joy and the artist’s apparent love for the natural world.

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What was particularly enjoyable about this tour was the way in which the historical aspects were tempered by an insight into the social factors. Young would often begin a sentence “I was surprised by…” or “What is fascinating is…”, a wonderful way of sharing the human and interactive nature of her research into exactly why a mother might be driven to suffocate her child, or how one’s masculinity might be affected by being unable to protect one’s family.

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‘Love Me Tender’ is a joy to behold as the pair dance an intimate routine depicting their honeymoon, with only a bed as a prop. It feels so private and romantic, that as an audience member, I felt I was intruding. It was in this scene above any other that my faith in Bovim’s vision to combine ballet and rock ‘n’ roll was restored.

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The majestic architectural wonder that is Mandela Rhodes Place houses not only a hotel and spa but a central atrium that boasts various shops and restaurants. I had the pleasure of dining at Doppio Zero, one of the resident restaurants.

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From tableaux vivant in the alcoves declaiming the joys of bread, milk and fruit to the carnal pleasures of Salome dancing, from a scene from The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover aligning sex and cannibalism to eating sashimi from a naked Barbie doll… there was no way we were going to be allowed to just eat, drink and make merry. Like lambs to the slaughter we were led unknowing from room to room and assailed by something new in each space, something that demanded attention and response, whether it was a skinned cow head or a rubber glove with which we were invited to use our fingers to eat a gold-leafed chocolate cake.

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Groomed to a lustrous finish the magnificent creatures pranced on the grass, their silky skin gleaming over well-toned bodies. Glossy manes flicked through the air as they aimed the occasional playful nip at one another… and that was just the race-goers.

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IGN is a show that can and should be enjoyed by anyone who appreciates music, regardless of their preferred genre. It is also a refreshing experience to go to a show in which the star performers are utterly unassuming and whose rapport with the audience is similar to that of two old friends meeting up after a very long time.

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With Youth day on the rise, Cape Town this weekend was host to many events revealing the talent, strength and beauty of the youth in our province. One such event was the Artscape Youth Jazz Festival. Directed by Camillo Lombard, this annual show provides a platform for aspirant young jazz musicians to show off their musical talent.

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It is a rare privilege to hear complete collections of works at one recital and Myer ambitiously included not one but three collections in his programme: The whole of Debussy’s Book I 12 Préludes, the three Sonnet movements from Liszt’s Années de Pèlerinage: Deuxième Année: Italia, and Iberia Book IV (Málaga, Jerez and Eritaňa) from the Spanish pianist and composer Isaac Albéniz

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Tutus, little ballet shoes and an all round show of pink flooded the passages and hallways of the UCT School of Dance. The Cape Town City Ballet’s Open Day saw aspiring ballerinas and experienced ballet fans jostling with the City Ballet’s large pool of talented dancers hoping to showcase their talents, in an unmissable day for anyone with a love for dance.

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Prince, The Jackson Five, James Brown and Kool & the Gang…. Yeah, baby – take me to Funky Town! I had my hairspray, legwarmers and neon headband ready until I realised that this was not a dress-up event. What a pity! We need more of those.

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The annual Riesling & Rarities Rock wine festival, set on the picturesque Hartenberg Wine Estate, is a showcase for some of the lesser-known white wine varietals such as Riesling, Viognier, Semillon and Gewürztraminer. If you think it’s much too hot for these ‘heavier’ whites, think again: wine, food, and music at a shaded garden party is just what you need to beat the heat.

Riesling is a modest but versatile wine. Depending on the terroir and a winemaker’s discretion, a Riesling can be as light and fruity as a Sauvignon Blanc, as acidic as a Chenin Blanc or as beautifully wooded as a Chardonnay.

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“Dancers and musicians are brought together for a collaborative performance. To create a spontaneous experience, dancers don’t rehearse with the musicians, and are only allowed to use an area of two square metres.”

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“With enigmatic performances from some of South Africa’s top actors, it’s a taut and sophisticated production which complements Lee Hall’s well-written script.”

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Through the tear-jerking laughter the play explores the disillusionment of old age. But at the same
time it delivers a notion of hope and relief in knowing that it happens to us all, that we are not alone.

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Don’t expect an elaborate stage design, an Italian libretto, an implausible and fable-like plot, or an over-the-top wardrobe when you go and see Leonard Bernstein’s opera, Trouble in Tahiti. This 45 minute one-act opera is none of the above. It has rather been described as ‘…an explicitly American opera that eschews European conventions and favours nativist vernacular’.

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That is, not very well. I like to think of it merely as lack of practice and thereby neatly sidestep the issue of ability, but now a full 12 years after obtaining my driver’s licence (at the third attempt) I actually own a car. Not only that, but I am living in a city where public transport is minimal and as a result I find myself driving at least a little bit almost every day. Much to my surprise I am enjoying being a part of the Capetonians’ cheerfully haphazard driving jamboree. [Read more…]

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Kani delivers perfectly aimed political punches which had the jam-packed audience nodding and murmuring in agreement. I even heard an “Amandla!” or two rise from the benches. Without falling into the trap of entitlement to opinion, the issues highlighted by the dialogue in Missing are a relevant call for us to revisit our political priorities.

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Set in a ‘rehearsal bunker’, Schmidt tells his story – a blend of humour and historically realistic insight – while above ground, muffled mortar fire falls ahead of the advancing Russian army. The play’s proximity to the truth lends it weight whilst serving to highlight the absurdity of the Nazi era.

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“This production of Annie delivers a refreshing energy to an old-fashioned tale while at the same time paying homage to the glory days of great chocolate box-style theatre productions.”

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