"The week before June 16, 2020 a dancer is stabbed to death after a worker is found dead in a police cell after we watch the dying of an ordinary man by knee on neck. The headlines read hashtag Black Death. The virus spreads its tentacles underneath the worldscape, and the tendrils of death reach softly out towards the people. The people are on the margins of the city in government structures built to survive a summer PR tour but not much else. It is winter and the people’s houses flood with the cold and wet and rain and the virus finds a way in through the crack in the window and the space where the doorframe doesn’t quite fit the door."
Qondiswa James is a cultural worker living in Cape Town, South Africa. She is an award-winning theatre-maker, performance artist, film and theatre performer, instillation artist, writer, arts facilitator and activist. She is currently studying her Masters in Live Art, Interdisciplinary and Public Art at the Institute of Creative Arts. Her work engages the socio-political imagination towards mobilising transgression.
She has staged public art interventions at Infecting the City and Live Arts Festival. Her onscreen appearances include High Fantasy (DIFF 2018 Best South African Film Award, Artistic Bravery Award). She has directed theatre works including A Faint Patch of Light (winner of a 2019 Standard Bank Ovation Award) and her new original play A HOWL IN MAKHANDA at the Virtual National Arts Festival 2020.
A HOWL IN MAKHANDA is available for viewing at the Virtual National Arts Festival here.
Listen to Qondiswa James: