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GRAHAMSTOWN DANCE (article first published : 1999-06-29)

The spice of India, the richness of Africa and the traditions of classical dance are beautifully integrated inA South African Siddhartha, the latest production from KZNs innovative Siwela Sonke Dance Theatre coming to Grahamstown for the 1999 Standard Bank National Arts Festival.

Based on a novel by Herman Hesse, it follows Prince Siddhartha's journey into enlightenment and his subsequent elevation into Buddha. This pilgrimage is located in South Africa at the dawn of the millennium and offers insightful reflections on both the fragmentation and reconciliation that currently occupies the country.

The nature of A South African Siddhartha provides an excellent backdrop for the melding of three powerful dance languages: traditional African dance (Zulu and Xhosa), classical Indian dance (Orissi and Bharatha Natyam) and contemporary dance. Conceived, directed and choreographed by Jay Pather, this dance theatre piece is a collaboration between local and India dancers.


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