Workshop lighting design in Johannesburg

The Newtown Dance Corner, composed of four Johannesburg-based dance organisations (the Dance Factory, the Dance Forum, Moving into Dance Mophatong and Vuyani Dance Theatre), has joined forces to host CROSSINGS, an innovative international artistic workshop gathering young professional choreographers, composers, dancers and lighting designers. Twenty seven South African and international participants took part in the workshop under the artistic direction of five established artists including two choreographers: Vincent MANTSOE (South Africa) and Michel KELEMENIS (France), two composers: James WEBB (South Africa) and Eva K├ľNIGER (Austria) and one lighting designer: Floriaan GANZEVOORT (Holland).

Participants included:

  • Choreographers:Jennifer Irons (Great Britain), Mamela Nyamza (South Africa), Rachel Erdos (Israel) and Thabo Rapoo (South Africa);
  • Composers:Angela Catherine Mullins (South Africa), Christian F. Schiller (Austria), Thokozani N. Mhlambi (South Africa) and Wen Liu (China / Austria);
  • Lighting Designers:Nkululeko Mazibuko, Mattews Phala, Sam Jack Mabona and Thabo Pule (all from South Africa);
  • Dancers:Aly Karembe (Mali), Claire Dufois (France / UK), Ezzat Ismail Ezzat (Egypt), Fana Tshabalala (South Africa), Irene Segura (Spain), Jamila Rodriguez (Portugal / South Africa), Julia Zenzie Burnham (South Africa), Kieron Kalil Jina (South Africa), Kim McCusker (South Africa), Laure-Jean de Vries (South Africa), Laurie Bonnet (France), Matthieu Sparma (France), Natalia Dinges (Poland), Ori Josephine Lenkinski (Israel), Sunnyboy Mandla Motau (South Africa) & Themba Mbuli (South Africa).


The dance classes and workshops took place from 26 July to 7 August 2010 in Johannesburg at the Newtown Dance Corner, which houses on the same premises the studios and stages of the Dance Factory, Dance Forum, Vuyani Dance Theatre and Moving into Dance Mophatong. Next door, the Bassline provided studios to the composers. The objective of this two-week programme of classes, workshops and sessions of artistic collaboration, was to give an opportunity to young international artists to work together and present a 12min-long artistic creation on the stage of the Dance Factory at the end of the residency.


The first week was based on workshops that explored the relationship between dance and music. While the lighting designers were experimenting and learning more about lighting on the stage of the Dance Factory, four groups composed of a choreographer, a composer and four dancers worked under the artistic direction of the facilitators. These groups changed every day giving a chance to each participant to work with each other. Every evening, the participants gathered with the facilitators to showcase and discuss the progress of their collaboration.


The second week focused on space perception. During these five days, four groups composed of a choreographer, a composer and dancers with a lighting designer worked together to create a 12 minutes piece. Evening events proposed a cultural programme around dance, music and lighting design. The end of the week culminated with the presentation of the four new creations, which were raved about in the local press.



“Nkululeko Mazibuko’s lighting is softly appropriate and interprets the closing moments beautifully as the trio’s snake their way along the stage into darkness.”

“Extraordinary lighting by Matthews Phala (…) Space becomes another character as does the light in blocks and pools.” ArtSpoken&Reviews