The hip hop productions ‘Hemelbesem: Die Afrikaansvatter’ and ‘Break’ will kick off Youth Day celebrations at Artscape Theatre at the end of May. Both will present stories from Cape Town’s coloured population.
‘Hemelbesem: Die Afrikaansvatter’ will be staged at Artscape Theatre on May 29 at 8.15pm. ‘Break’ will be staged at the Artscape Theatre on May 30 at 2pm and 8.15pm. (Tickets for each show costs R60 per person.)
‘Hemelbesem: Die Afrikaansvatter’, in a colourful version of Afrikaans, tells the story of a young man’s journey of self-discovery. It features Simon aka HemelBesem who is a writer, poet, artist, rapper, activist, creator, performer, motivator, entertainer and TV presenter on SABC2’s ‘Pasella’. As a performer, HemelBesem is become celebrated for breathing new life into the Afrikaans cultural sphere, without restriction or exclusion.
The show zooms in on the variety of standard versions of Afrikaans and aims to highlight its humour through rap, music and poetry. It is up to the audience to decide whether rapper HemelBesem is an Afrikaansvatter – someone who uses the language eloquently – or an Afri-KANS-vatter – someone who takes chances with the language. At its heart, ‘Afrikaansvatter’ is a one-man stand-up comedy show that leans towards satire.
Topics explored include sport, religion, racial differences and relationships. Hemelbesem will be joined on stage by YOMA, Linkris, TAKE NOTE BAND, Babette Viljoen, Gareth Harvey, Mak1one, Kanasashi Tattoos, Handbreak Turn and Meli Grey.
The second hip hop production, ‘Break’, is a show that blends hip hop dance with traditional South African dance styles ranging from Zulu culture, Pantsula, Namastap, Gumboot, Cape Jazz and others.
‘Break’ is a partnership between Artscape Theatre and Heal the Hood, a community-based volunteer organisation by the youth for the youth on the Cape Flats. It is hip hop theatre that challenges the boxes we fit artistic expression genres into. It also tells the story of a young man’s journey of self-discovery and blends South African dance and music with hip hop culture.
Messages in the production’s song lyrics and storyline speak directly to issues of identity and heritage. The ‘Break’ cast includes internationally acclaimed street dancers who have represented South Africa at global dance competitions. This show is directed by Emile Jansen aka Emile YX?. He has written and produced ‘Break’ as he found a need to push for more original South African influences in the South African street dance community.
* Book at Computicket.
Four lucky readers can win two sets of double tickets to these shows. Send your name and “Artscape Hip Hop” in the subject line in an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org before Monday, May 25, at 12pm. Good luck!