William Kentridge live in Johannesburg

19 August 2011

World-renowned artist William Kentridge, working with a handful of extraordinary artists, will display his remarkable and varied talents during a two-week programme at Johannesburg’s Market Theatre as part of the city’s 2011 Arts Alive International Festival.

Kentridge’s festival, Refuse The Hour, runs from 6 to 18 September. The programme, launched in Johannesburg on 11 August, is presented by the Market Theatre in association with the Goodman Gallery and the French Institute of South Africa.

I Am Not Me, The Horse Is Not Mine

First up, on 6 and 7 September, is I Am Not Me, The Horse Is Not Mine, a theatrical monologue based on the Nikolai Gogol short story The Nose, in which a man wakes up one morning to find that his nose has escaped his face and is creating its own life.

The monologue is one of the elements Kentridge developed while producing his interpretation of The Nose, which premiered in New York in 2010. “The show combines narration, video projection, vocals and instrumental soundtracks by Phillip Miller,” he said.

It will be performed by Kentridge, who has taken the play to several countries, including Australia, Japan and Germany. It has also been seen in Cape Town; this is its first Johannesburg season.

Telegrams From The Nose

Telegrams From The Nose, from 8 to 10 September, presents a large-canvas painting by Kentridge, over which are projected shapes such as a human shadow; a small, black animated shape using cut-out paper; and geometric patterns evoking Russian constructivism, an artistic movement characterised by the use of industrial materials such as glass, sheet metal and plastic.

During the projection, Francois Sarhan will read from the works of the Russian authors Gogol, Daniil Kharms and Dmitri Shostakovich.

Following the projection, the imaginary alter-ego of Sarhan, Professor Henri-Jacques Glacon, will deliver a lecture.

Playing On Image

From 12 to 14 September, Playing On Image will present a variety of music, film and performance work, including the music of Phillip Miller presented as a live concert, and the Kentridge films Journey To The Moon (2003), Medicine Chest (2001) and Dance Of The Rhino (2005).

Dancing With Dada

On 16 to 18 September, Kentridge will collaborate with award-winning dancer and choreographer Dada Masilo in Dancing With Dada, a show incorporating “dance, live music, strange machines and projection” in which Masilo dances with Kentridge-created machines and/or sculptures.

Dancing With Dada is the two artists’ first trial collaboration, and will see the two continue working together next year.

Dancing With Dada is an enormous project,” said Kentridge. “This is the beginning of us working together; we will see what happens when we combine her dance moves with what I do.”

Masilo said working with Kentridge was a wonderful opportunity. “I did not know anything about fine arts, but I think it is great to just shift things a little bit,” she said.

And it has inspired her: the dancer said she was going to collaborate with more artists in the future to broaden her knowledge of various arts.


Refuse The Hour will conclude with a Cine-Concert at 3pm on 18 September, during which a selection of Gorge Melies’ French films will be screened, accompanied by narration in French and English.

“We are very lucky to show the films of Gorge Melies as one of the components,” said Kentridge. “Melies was a great film maker and an innovator.”

All shows start at 8pm at the Market’s Main Theatre. Tickets are available at the theatre and via www.computicket.com for R150 each.

Source: City of Johannesburg