The Antigel Festival in Geneva, Switzerland kicks off on Friday, 29 January. This 17 day affair runs until 14 February and boasts an array of concerts, dance and sports shows, parties and more. For the first ever South Africa, What’s Up? programme, Antigel partnered with Shap Shap to curate an all local stage that will share SA flavour with international fest-goers.
Shap Shap is a new project platform initiated by Mélanie Rouquier, a performing art producer based in Geneva, Switzerland. The NPO is aimed at exploring encounters, the circulation of people, mutual inspiration, cooperation, inventiveness, sharing of experience and resources. She says that it’s about creativity, empowerment, politics, equal rights regardless of race and gender, social development, activism through the art, whatever the medium: performing and visual art, music, writing, photography. It’s about knowledge and consciousness. Mélanie has spent extended stints in South Africa working with contemporary dancers on productions. Her intention behind curating the South Africa, What’s Up? programme was to share the South African experience with Swiss audiences for the first time.
The local line up features big-name headliners as well as up-and-coming artists and performers.
Friday, 29 February
Mamela Nyamza and Nelisiwe Xaba’s The Last Attitude
The Last Attitude is a sharp and humorous performance depicting the damage that classical dancing has on the body and mind. With robotic gestures the duo mimic ballet movements and figures, revealing the ordinary underlying racism in the world of ballet.
Wednesday, 3 February
Spoek Mathambo’s future sounds
Spoek Mathambo is a multifaceted artist who Antigel rightly describes as “a Titan on the South African scene”. After an opening performance by Swiss hip-hop act Ben Sharpa & RIP!, he’ll take the stage to showcase his unique and futuristic blend of hip-hop, township tech, electro and rock.
The world premiere of Thami Manekehla’s new production
Thami Manekehla is a socially conscious artist whose thoughtful performance piece, A good place for no tourists nor locals, raises questions around the rate of crime and social injustice plaguing South Africa.
Thursday and Friday, 4-5 Februrary
Albert Silindokuhle Ibokwe Khoza’s Influences of a closet chant
Naked and made up like a Sangoma, Albert Khoza explores the meandering paths of otherness touching on themes of sexuality, religion and uprooting. This performance summons the audience into an incantatory ritual, a place untouched by the world that so often generalises and marginalises.
Friday, 6 February
Deep house maestro Black Coffee
DJ Black Coffee is a firm favourite in South Africa, as well as a key figure in the global house scene. Now, he’s taking his minimal, sexy and innovative sound to Antigel.
Nozinja: make a joyful noise
The pioneer of Shangaan Electro, Nozinja combines tsonga disco, dub and cheap electronic patterns into a sound that’s impossible to stand still to.
Afro-house 2.0 with Culoe De Song
Having collaborated with the likes of Louie Vega and Rocco, Culoe De Song’s sophisticated, Afro-tinted, and delicately textured productions form a refined brand of techno.
Prolific producer Card On Spokes
Prominent Cape Town producer and up-and-coming artist Card On Spokes has a wonderfully entertaining sound that brings together striking bass lines and aggressive electro.
For more details on Antigel Festival: www.antigel.ch