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After a successful premiere last year at the South African State Theatre, the dance production “KIU” is curated for the Main Programme at the National Arts Festival this year in Grahamstown.
Kiu dates for Grahamstown are, 1st July 14:00 & 20:00, 2nd July 11:00 at the Rhodes Theatre. Tickets will cost you R80. After the arts festival, the production will also return to State Theatre for a run from the 13th to 24th July with tickets selling for R110.
Kiu, the Swahili word for thirst, is a diverse narrative signifying the critical age of drought in Africa and the significance of preserving water. Inspired by the ancient African rain dance ‘Kiu’ is a plea for rainfall. It is written, directed and choreographed by both University of Pretoria and Tshwane University of Technology’s part-time Drama Lecture, Mduduzi Vincent Nhlapo.
A poignant and unbridled quest for redemption to quench the thirst that seems to be destabilizing humanity, this thirst is highlighted as human’s great desire leading to dystopia and civil unrest. “Kiu is a profound and moving dance experience. Raw, sensitive, intense, hostile, sensuous, meditative and soul-searching. Performed to hauntingly beautiful live Afrocentric music,” urges Nhlapo.
Nhlapo’s name is not new to the National Arts festival as many would recall him being the Golden Ovation award winner with the production ‘Anatomy of Weather’ (2011) by Bailey Snyman and Nicola Haskins that performed in Amsterdam Fringe and was rated the highlight of the festival. He is an acclaimed playwright, choreographer and performer who is known for his robust, controversial, provocative and cutting-edge political content and resistance. His stance is known in theatre works such as ‘Who stole the E-toll’, ‘The absent figure’, ‘Revolution by the dead’, ‘Rocks and Roses’. More recently he choreographed the latest Freedom musical by the State Theatre’s artistic Director Aubrey Sekhabi.
The National Arts Festival is an annual festival of performing arts in the South African calendar. It is the largest arts festival on the African continent and one of the largest performing arts festivals in the world by visitor numbers.