Urban Festival 2020 & Free State Arts Festival 2020 (SA)
The exciting South Africa-Zimbabwe multimedia collaboration, ‘THE AMAVUSO PROJECT’ is set for delivery at two online festivals this October – The Urban Festival (25 Oct) and Free State Arts Festival (26 Oct 2020) – after months of work by an all-women creative team from the two countries, in the most challenging of environments.
The project uses performance and digital media to present authentic and diverse perspectives on the ‘blesser’ (aka sugar daddy) phenomenon as an increasingly accepted popular culture, drawing content from real stories, conversations, opinions and responses to this topic, gathered through a workshop process and from online sources. It profiles uncomfortable truths around urban safety, women empowerment, gendered power dynamics and the pervasiveness and impact of social media, offering audiences a sense of the interactions between ‘blessers’ and ‘blessees’.
“It’s a story about women, by women”, said Zimkitha. “The Amavuso Project is one of a kind, driven strongly by women artists who rehearsed tirelessly under lockdown via Zoom and Whatsapp, across the mighty Limpopo River, our shared border. The women behind the scenes also came together to tell this story truthfully and artistically.”
The cast comprises strong young artists from the two countries – South African actresses Dineo Komane and Eutychia Rakaki, and from Zimbabwe, Charmaine Mudau and Agnes Ncube; and also introduces the young Angel Mlalazi (SA). The cast are credited for their valuable contributions in the workshopping and devising process.
Behind the scenes are a team of respected professional women in the arts – Sibikwa’s Artistic Director Phyllis Klotz who worked with Zimkitha over the process; lighting designer Namhla Blou (SA), videographer Nicole Ngulube, Nhimbe Trust’s Zimbabwe project coordinator Lisa Sidambe, and graphic designer/publicist Penny Yon (Zim).
Other members of the creative team are videographer/editor Lungelo Mntambo (SA), photographers Mgcini Nyoni (Zim) and Tsietsi Morobi (SA); and technical direction and assistance in Zimbabwe from Saimon ‘Mambazo’ Phiri.
The Amavuso Project: Screenings (Note: 16+ | L | N | M)
Sunday 25 October 2020 – The URBAN FESTIVAL 2020
The film will be available on YouTube from 5.15pm, and a Q&A with the production’s directors will start at 7pm (Phyllis Klotz/Sibikwa Arts Centre in conversation with the director, Zimkitha Kumbaca)
Monday 26 October 2020 – FREE STATE ARTS FESTIVAL 2020
6pm CAT (streaming readily available until 13 November 2020)
Tickets available for R100 at
The Amavuso Project is created in a partnership between Sibikwa Arts Centre (Johannesburg, South Africa) and Nhimbe Trust (Bulawayo, Zimbabwe), and supported by an ANT Mobility Grant from Pro Helvetia Johannesburg financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).
SIBIKWA is a visionary arts centre that promotes quality arts education, performance, vocational training and job creation in South Africa. NHIMBE TRUST is a Zimbabwean NGO that works at the intersection of culture and development to foster local socio-economic development.
See the evolution of the project at https://www.facebook.com/The-