Dance, cinema, 2 world premieres and more: The Rolex Arts Festival at The Baxter

Sir David Adjaye (Photo: Getty Images)
Sir David Adjaye (Photo: Getty Images)

Cape Town - More than 200 renowned artists and arts leaders from South Africa and around the world will gather at the Baxter on 8 and 9 February to attend the prestigious Rolex Arts Weekend.

The Arts Weekend is a series of public events – talks, readings, exhibitions and performances, including two world premieres. The two-day celebration is the culmination of the current cycle of the programme, which pairs master artists with emerging artists in several disciplines for a period of creative exchange in a one-to-one mentoring relationship.

Highlights over the weekend include dance, architecture, literature, music, art symposia and cinema.

The Saturday is dedicated to dance and architecture and Sunday to literature and music.

Seating is limited, so early booking is strongly advised.

The festival will also feature the work of the 2018−2019 protégés of the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative with their mentors.

Sir David Adjaye is a mentor to Mariam Kamara, Zakir Hussain is a mentor to Marcus Gilmore, Crystal Pite is a mentor to Khoudia Touré, and Colm Tóibín is a mentor to Colin Barrett.

Tickets for all events are only R100, and R50 for students and available here. All proceeds for the Rolex Arts Weekend will go towards the Zabalaza Festival.


Saturday 8 February 2020

10:00 - 11:30 | Main Theatre | R100

Symposium: Who is Unrepresented in the Arts Today? The Arts in times of Polarization, moderated by Professor Homi K. Bhabha, with Lara Foot, Annemarie Jacir, Anish Kapoor, Yo Yo Ma and Wole Soyinka.

14:00 – 15:00 | Main Theatre | R100

Dance Spotlight: the world premiere of When the night comes, by Senegalese protégée Khoudia Touré, a pioneer in urban street dance, with three members of the dance company, Compagnie La Mer Noire. The production was created following Touré's close interaction with her mentor, Canadian choreographer Crystal Pite, who will introduce the piece, which was born from hip-hop and infused with other dance styles and techniques.

15:30 – 17:00 | Concert Hall | R100

Architecture Spotlight: Protégée Mariam Kamara, originally from Niger and mentor Ghanaian-born British architect Sir David Adjaye, will present their plans for a new cultural centre in Niamey, Niger's capital. The discussion, moderated by Ghanaian-Scottish architect Lesley Lokko, will be followed by the official opening of the exhibition, Public realm along the Niger River, Niamey. The architecture installation will be available for public viewing until the end of February.

Sunday 9 February 2020

14:00 – 15:30 | Main Theatre | R100

Symposium: Other Muses: Influences and Confluences in the Making of Art, moderated by Professor Homi K. Bhaba, with William Kentridge, Tracy K Smith, Julie Taymor and Robert Wilson.

16:00 – 17:30 | Main Theatre | R100

Literature Spotlight: Mentor Colm Tóibín and fellow Irishman and protégé Colin Barrett who completed his first novel, The English Brothers. An adapted extract from the book that features the two writers' mutual fascination with questions of belonging and self-definition will be performed by local actors in advance of a discussion, What Can be Said: Home and Voice, between mentor and protégé.

18:00 – 19:15 | Concert Hall | R100

Music Spotlight: Music protégé Marcus Gilmore, an innovative young drummer from the United States, will present a world premiere of his composition, pulse, commissioned by the American Composers Orchestra. The composition for ensemble and the spoken word will include an exciting exchange between Gilmore and former Rolex literature protégée Tracy K. Smith. Gilmore will perform the work with musicians from the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra and its resident conductor Brandon Phillips. Following the performance and a solo by Gilmore, the protégé and his mentor Zakir Hussain will discuss their mentoring experience. 


Saturday & Sunday 12:00 – 21:00 | Golden Arrow Studio

Films about past Protegés and Mentors will be shown, and entrance is free.

Compiled by Alex Isaacs

Photo: Getty Images