Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Keiskamma Carnival at Grahamstown National Arts Festival. Concerts on 5th and 6th July. Art exhibition 27th June - 7th July.

Keiskamma Arts Presents their music theatre production Keiskamma Carnival at
Grahamstown National Arts Festival on 5 and 6 July plus art exhibition 27 June - 7 July.

We all at the Keiskamma Trust, think celebrating life's a must
So here we will begin, our collection of feather, fur and fin
With beads and thread and flute and drum
We've made a story of where we come from

So begins the story of Keiskamma Arts' latest music theatre offering, Keiskamma Carnival. Premiering at this year's Festival Keiskamma Carnival is a celebration of creation, creatures and creativity. This is the first interdisciplinary production by the Keiskamma Trust, and it brings together their award-winning art and music programmes in a vibrant and joyous production that celebrates the natural world.

Keiskamma Carnival is a re-interpretation of Camille Saint-Saëns’ well-known orchestral work Carnival of the Animals. The new arrangement by Allan Stephenson (commissioned by SAMRO Foundation) draws on Keiskamma Music Academy’s unique sound that is created by using both traditional African and classical Western instruments. The Keiskamma Art Project has crafted beautiful sets and props for the production that displays their expertise in re-imagining Western artwork. The artwork, puppets and props will be handled by a group of young Keiskamma actors.

The soloists are Frank Mallows and Bronwen Clacherty on marimba. Our conductor is Anthony Drake and the Director is Kyla Davis.

The art exhibition launches Keiskamma Art Project’s wire and fibre sculptures: gossamer jelly fish, baby shweshwe elephant, tortoise, buck head trophies amongst others as well as launch of new book: A Carnivalesque Collection.

5 July (Fingo, Dr Jacob Zuma Drive @ 14h00) - Entrance is free

6 July (Rhodes Chapel @ 15h00) - Tickets are R30 at Computicket or the door

Art exhibition 27 June – 7 July, daily at the Monument ground floor 9h00 – 18h00

For more information please contact:

Helen Vosloo 082 664 1190

Florence Danais 078 194 6253

The performances are made possible through generous funding from the Rupert Foundation.
The exhibition is funded by Mercedes-Benz South Africa, RMB and BASA.

Keiskamma Intlansi and Sustainable Seas Trust: Children’s art and storytelling workshop at Recreation Centre, Albany Road
Friday 5 July 9h30 – 12h00.
For more information contact: Brenda Fishwick 083 4214363

PLEASE NOTE: Performance dates have been changed and are NOT as advertised on the NAF Festival Programme

'Hamburg to Hamburg' - Keiskamma visit to Germany May 7th - 12th

Carol, Helen, four music students and Nomfusi Nkani from the Art Project were honoured to visit Hamburg, Germany last month. Their visit celebrated the exhibition of the Keiskamma Altarpiece in the Lutheran Church in Wandsbek, where it was on view for six weeks. Maren Winter had organised the exhibition and our Keiskamma group were warmly welcomed by Maren and her team.

The music students - Thabo, Thabiso, Sandiswe and Wonke - performed at a concert and at a church service on Ascension Thursday. During the visit, a new support group, 'Keiskamma Germany' was created, thanks to the hard work of our friends there: Eva Schäflein, Yannic Herrenknecht and Paulus van der Merwe.

Our Keiskamma group were touched by the warmth of the welcome they received. Yannic escorted the students around the harbour where they saw a special parade of ships which really enchanted them. Dinner at Yannic's parents' home was another treat which everyone really enjoyed.

The comments and reflections below give a flavour of this very special journey:

'I believe it is this kind of connection that is where the true Keiskamma Trust lives and works and thank everyone in Germany for their hospitality and G T Ferreira for buying the altar piece and thus making this trip possible and  for allowing it to travel'      Carol Hofmeyr


'It is with gratitude towards Carol and the Keiskamma art project that four keiskamma music students were able to perform in Hamburg at the 6 week exhibition of the Keiskamma Altarpiece.
It was a privilege to witness the broadening of world view for our students. Thabo, Thabiso, Sandisiwe and Wonke did Keiskamma proud. Audiences commented on their open and spirited yet disciplined behaviour and performances.
They played Vivaldi (with added Uhadi bow) and several arrangements of traditional Xhosa music: Ubuhle Bendoda was performed as an impromptu reworking of Daniel Hutchinson's arrangement, making the best of the small ensemble.
Jen Hoyer's arrangement of "Children Playing" incorporating several Xhosa melodies was beautiful, as was the very touching performance of I Zolani, also arranged by Jen Hoyer.
Apart from the performances, the students were able to watch their old friend and teacher, Paulus, teaching a master class, as well as participating in a class themselves with recorder teacher, Anabel Roeser.
The special Keiskamma event was titled; 'Building Bridges' and we really felt that we made strong and meaningful connections, building bridges for a future together.    Helen Vosloo

Carol and Nomfusi opening the panels

We went to Germany, four students from Keiskamma Music Academy. We had our first concert in the church. We played two pieces. The audience liked our music very much. After the concert I felt happy. We went to the harbour and we saw the buildings and the ships.
We saw Yannic, Anne, Lisa, Eva and Yannic''s family.
I liked everything in Germany!      Sandisiwe

Sandisiwe and Nobue

On Wednesday we played 10 pieces in the church, and we played so beautifully, especially the Andante (Vivaldi) because we played it with a Uhadi bow. I also played the Djembe. We played Ubuhle Bendoda and it was also very nice.
After we finished playing there was a grandmother who gave us food that we ate. After that Yannic took us to the harbour and told us about it and we also took some pictures.
The best thing that I enjoyed was going to the harbour and going to Yannic's house for supper and being on the aeroplane.
Our first flight was from East London to Johannesburg. The second plane was very very big and we landed in Dubai. On the plane I thought I was going to vomit, but I didn’t, I only got dissy. It had a small TV in front of you, so you could decide if you wanted to play games or watch movies (but not bad movies that are not allowed for you). You also had a pillow and blanket on your seat.

Thabo, Wonke, Sandisiwe and Thabiso with Yannic

For me, going to Germany was a very big experience because opportunities like that don't only just come to you.
We had three concerts there, on Thursday there was a church function in the cathedral. We played three pieces and we enjoyed it a lot. After the concert we left and went to the harbour. it was beautiful.
I loved spending the evening with Yannic's family. I also loved being with Helen's family in Johannesburg. It was so exciting being there again.
In Germny I have learnt how to be a leader and how to communicate to people in an open way. Thabo

The quartet in front of the Altarpiece

We went to a Masterclass on Friday. We had lessons with a professional recorder player, Annabelle.
She taught, showed and helped us with our struggles in music. She explained what do you do to make music have a meaning, make it more alive.
The most thing I loved about Germany was the friendly people we met and the people who helped us with setting up and organising us everything.
I really enjoyed it at the harbour, and walking around the 'other Hamburg'!    Thabiso

Monday, 3 June 2013

The Quartet of Peace at Boughton House

On Saturday 27th April, Keiskamma Trust's friends and supporters, the Duke & Duchess of Buccleuch, hosted a very special concert at their home, Boughton House, in the UK. Carol & I, and other Keiskamma friends from both South Africa and the UK, were invited to attend, and it was a really wonderful and very memorable occasion, featuring both the Quartet of Peace and four special tapestries which the Art project have created to accompany the Quartet.

The Quartet of Peace is the name given to two violins, a viola and a cello made by master craftsman Brian Lisus in Cape Town in 2010, each dedicated to one of South Africa's four Nobel Peace Laureates: Albert Luthuli, Desmond Tutu, FW de Clerk and Nelson Mandela. The vision for the quartet is to promote the values of freedom, peace, reconciliation and hope promoted by these great men, using the power of music to inspire and uplift, as well as to make possible careers in music for young people who have the talent but not the means.

Now the quartet is to be complemented by four unique tapestries, designed and created here in Hamburg, which also focus on the lives of the four Peace Laureates. Carol 'unveiled' the new art works to the invited audience, and they were greatly admired, as were the other three large tapestries at Boughton which the Duke and Duchess commissioned in 2011.

The afternoon at Boughton began with a lovely lunch which was followed by a whistlestop tour of Boughton and its treasures. We then gathered in the Great Hall to hear the string ensemble (Jessica Bailey, Max Baillie, Simiso Radebe and Peter Thomas) play Mozart, Borodin and Dvorak on these exquisite instruments.

The Duke and Duchess welcomed us so warmly into their home and spoke with such pleasure about their association with both the Quartet of Peace and the Keiskamma Trust. I think we all left Boughton on that chilly but sunny spring afternoon, inspired by the vision which was captured in both the music and the art, and the magic of Boughton itself.

May the Quartet of Peace and the accompanying art works continue their journey around the globe with their message of peace and hope. 

The making of Boughton Music Tapestries