SHARED HISTORY 2015 –THE INDIAN EXPERIENCE IN SOUTH AFRICA @SharedHistorySA #SharedHistory Festival 2015


Leading Indian performance arts company, Teamwork Arts, in collaboration with the High Commission of India in South Africa, is proud to present the ninth edition of the annual festival Shared History, The Indian Experience in South Africa, from September 7 – 25, 2015.

Shared History, begun in 2007, is now a regular feature on the South African cultural scene. This festival of Music, Dance, Theatre, Comedy and Exhibitions showcases the best of contemporary arts and culture from India and South Africa, and explores the shared artistic bond and cultural history of the two countries and their recent pasts.

The High Commission of India in South Africa prides itself on promoting and propagating Indian culture and building relations between India and rest of the world. By hosting this exhibition it hopes to provide an avenue for dialogue between India and South Africa.

The hallmark of the festival is its focus on events that offer South Africans the magic and allure of India.

The festival opens with the Food festival at the Classic India Restaurant in Boksburg from September 7 to 14. Chefs from India will provide the titillating gastronomical experience of Indian street food. The Musical must-see of the Festival is the unique collective of Rajasthani folk musicians highlighting Kutle Khan, a multi-talented world musician; in the Theatre slot is C Sharp C Blunt a play that looks at traditional gender roles as engrained by culture and classical performance training versus the woman as the globalised consumer living in a new market that caters to her every want and need; and to bring in a lighter mood there is Papa CJ, an established international comedian and Simmi Areff, a local comedian who spent a year undercover as a Wits Journalism student. Dance is represented by one of the foremost dance companies of India, The Nrityagram Dance Ensemble.  Also on offer is a Wellness workshop: Yoga and Sand Sculpting on Durban’s beach. The festival closes with the Photo Exhibition, Memory against Forgetting – a solo collection that chronicles the work of photojournalist, Ranjith Kally on September 25.

The Nrityagram Dance Ensemble takes to the stage at the Wits Theatre, Braamfontein on September 10 and 11 and then moves to The Playhouse Company, Durban on September 13 and 14.

This highly sought-after Ensemble has performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, from New York to Hawaii in the US and in Denmark, Holland, Portugal, the Middle-east, Singapore and Japan.  Nrityagram blends Odissi, a classical Indian dance, with contemporary concepts to transport viewers to enchanted worlds. Odissi is characterised by sensuousness and lyricism and with movements that reflect the motifs of Orissa temple sculpture, it captures drum rhythms, melodies, as well as the poetic meaning of songs taken from the vast canon of Oriya music.

At The Playhouse Company Theatre, Durban on September 10 and 11, is the latest offering by Germany’s Flinntheater C Sharp C Blunt, the Indo-German collaboration that explores the realms of digital dramaturgy, repetition and user choices to create a new, hybrid form of theatre-meets-performance art. This one-woman show is a witty, humorous and satirical interrogation of what it is like being a woman in the entertainment industry today. C Sharp C Blunt will have one performance in Johannesburg at the Auto & General Theatre on the Square on September 14.

Shared History’s Comedy offering, featuring the established, international comedian Papa CJ and local comedian Simmi Areff, will have performances at the Suncoast Supernova Cinema, Durban on September 12, the Lyric Theatre, Gold Reef City on September 13 and at the GIBS Business School, 26 Melville Road, Illovo, Johannesburg on September 15.

On September 12, Sudarsan Pattnaik, a world renowned Indian Sand Artist from Orissa will be down at the beach in Durban starting at 10:30 throughout the day, sand sculpting. Pattnaik started sculpting images on sand at the age of seven and has since designed hundreds of sand sculptures and won many national and international awards for his creative designs. His sand sculpture on ‘Black Taj Mahal’ earned him world-wide accolades. He has represented India at 50 international Sand Sculpture championships, of which he won 27. Most recently he was awarded the Padma Shri.

The Kutle Khan Project is a unique collective of world musicians. Kutle Khan is a multi-talented world musician who has performed on various stages across the world. His music is as seductive as it is rhythmically complex. The Kutle Khan Project features Kutle Khan as singer, multi instrumentalist and artistic director, Champe Khan on the harmonium and vocal Sarangi player, Dayam Khan with the Khartal, Gafur Khan playing the Bhapang and Morchang, Roshan Khan with the Tabla and Dholak and Laxmi Sapera as a Sufi dancer.

The Kutle Khan Project will have one performance in Johannesburg on September 13 at the Lyric Auditorium, Gold Reef City at 15:00.

 The Food festival will run from September 7-14 at the Classic India Restaurant, Boksburg, Johannesburg. In India, street food is legion and savoured by locals and overseas friends and visitors with equal gusto.  Specialised chefs from India will provide the perfect gastronomical experience of Indian street food with carefully selected items that will reveal the diverse range of culinary delights from the delectable array of dishes that are available at roadside cafes, street corners, alleys and lanes in every village and city across the country.

Bringing the festival to a close on September 25 is the Photo Exhibition, Memory against Forgetting, a solo collection that chronicles the work of photojournalist, Ranjith Kally at GIBS Business School, Melrose Johannesburg.  Kally, one of the most prolific and important photojournalists on South Africa’s recent past, gives a first-hand, on the ground perspective of a country in upheaval and a society divided between the favoured and the dispossessed.  This thoughtfully curated collection of images by the writer Kalim Rajab highlights the unique contribution this artist has made to the understanding of the tensions of our past as South Africans.

The 2015 Shared History Festival’s sponsors are: Main Sponsors – New National Assurance, Airport Company South Africa, Sanlam, AMKA Group; Associate Sponsors – Incredible India, The Classic India Restaurant, Sivananda World Peace Foundation, Bank of Baroda; Radio Partner – Eastwave Radio 92.2FM; Print Partner – Shereno Printers; Supporters – CISA, EThekwini municipality, India Club

The Playhouse Company, Wits Theatre and The Lyric, Gold Reef City – Computicket 0861 915 8000 / www.computicket.com

Theatre on the Square – Strictly Tickets – 082 553 5901 or online at www.ticket.co.za or call the theatre’s box office:  011 883 8606.

Schedule:  Shared History 2015   7 – 25 September

07 September – 14 September : Food Festival, The Classic India Restaurant, Boksburg,

10 September

Dance – Nrityagram, Wits Theatre, Jhb – 20:00

Theatre – C Sharp C Blunt, The Playhouse Company, Durban – 19:00

11 September

Dance – Nrityagram, Wits Theatre, Jhb – 20:00

Theatre – C Sharp C Blunt, The Playhouse Company, Durban – 19:00

12 September

Yoga – Consul General’s Residence (by invitation) Jhb

Sand Sculpting – Sudarsan Pattnaik, Durban Beach, Durban – 10:30 onwards

Comedy – Papa CJ – Naked + Simmi Areff, Supernova Sun Coast Cinema, Durban – 19:00

13 September

Music – The Kutle Khan Project, Lyric Auditorium, Jhb – 15:00

Comedy – Papa CJ – Naked + Simmi Areff, Lyric Auditorium, Jhb – 18:30

Dance – Nrityagram, The Playhouse Company, Durban – 19:00

14 September

Theatre – C Sharp C Blunt, Theatre on the Square, Jhb – 18:30

Dance – Nrityagram, The Playhouse Company, Durban – 19:00

15 September – Comedy – Papa CJ – Naked, GIBS Business School, Jhb – 18:30

25 September – Photo Exhibition – Memory against forgetting – GIBS, Jhb  – 18:00 for 18:30

*Schedule/time is subject to change. Please visit www.sharedhistory.co.in or www.facebook.com/SharedHistorySA for more information and updates.

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