#CreatepreneurAfrica- Riaan Hendricks, prolific South African filmmaker on the “Ramothopo the Centenarian” journey

A multi-award winning, Cape Town's prolific film director, Riaan Hendricks weaves into a rich tapestry of storytelling moments engrossed in the delicate elements of his creations. He wavers on motions of a constant struggle to engage audiences with emotional landscapes of life characters and stories into the beyond of everyday lives. His latest film follows the 110-year old Ramothopo and his 99-year-old wife, Anna.

Ramothopo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He initiated his ‘sterling directorial debut’  into the world of documentary with ‘A Fisherman’s tale in 2004.

His celebrated work constantly pushes the boundaries laid out in the documentary genre. Riaan is currently completing his Masters in Film at the Universtiy of Cape Town( UCT).

Skype: riaanhendricks | Twitter: @filmseason
Vimeo: riaanhendricksfilm | Facebook: riaanhendricks

A Fisherman’s Tale (2004) “…reminds me of the art of Picasso and Diego Riviera, who had used their art to animate the condition of the working people and their dignity”
– Professor Ben Turok, 
Independent Newspapers.

His film “The Devils Lair (2013) was received critical acclaim and was played on almost all the continents receiving multiple film awards.

 

  • Best Documentary World Cinema Award at the New Zealand International
  • Documentary Edge Festival 2014
  • Best Documentary Feature Award SAFTA’s 2014
  • Best Documentary Feature Editor Award SAFTA’s 2014
  • Jury Special Mention Documentary, Luxor Film Festival, 2014
  • Best South African Documentary Feature, JOZI FILM FEST 2014
  • Best South African Feature Documentary, Screen Excellence Award, 2013
  • Jury Special Mention at the 24th Festival Cinema Africano Asia Latin Americana, 2014

Meet CreatepreneurAfrica’s  profound South African filmmaker, Riaan Hendriks

Riaan Hendricks is a filmmaker. A beekeeper. Publisher of Docstreet Radio (www.soundcloud.com/docstreet).
What is your latest film all about?

My latest film is titled “Ramothopo the Centenarian”. It’s story of what it takes to return the love and care to 110-year old Ramothopo old and Anna his 99-year-old wife – who for generations played a vital role in their family and community.

In her younger years, Anna spent her younger life as a prophetess and healer. Leprosy was amongst many of the sicknesses she knew how to cure. She assisted many barren women to have children.

Even the mentally ill were lined up at her door for help. It’s not easy to judge her age from gauging her intelligent conversations. This woman she is strong – and surpassing 100 is nothing new in their family.

Their home was always a refuge to those in need of help.

Ramothopo was a preacher over hundreds of people. It’s his feeble state that compelled his granddaughter to spend more time with him in what seems to be the last years of his life. She’d leave her Cape Town family behind and journey the 1800km trip with 2 year old Anushka to attend to Ramothopo – whom she calls her dad. Her own dad passed away when she was still very young.

The film itself is a heart-warming experience. We all have a Ramothopo and an Anna in our lives. And if time permits – we too will find ourselves where they are. After watching the film – you’ll never look at life quite the same again.

How did you finance the film?

This is one of the most expensive films i’ve made in recent years. It’s also my longest. The cost cannot be translated into cash value – since it’s entirely funded with passion, handwork, and perhaps diligence. Usually, you’d go out and look for money before you film – or when you are in the edit. This film, however – was never meant to be a film. Initially, I was merely taken by the contrast between my two-year-old daughter and her interaction with her great-grandparents. I chose to film it for memories keep shake.

However – the more I filmed, the harder it became to confront the themes as it manifested itself.

I’m of sound mind and healthy body. To confront the realities of feebleness, old age and the dependence on love and care is the hardest I’ve ever filmed. Yet it’s in the very struggle of processing the themes and translating it into meaning that a film gets born. From experience, I know that is how all my films are done. It’s in your heart where the film gets born.

Thus every time we went to Botlokwa, i’d film. And the more I filmed – the more the humanness of feebleness, madness, and love emerged.

A life experience that changes you often makes a good film. This film changed me. I could not walk away from it without translating it into cinema and be titling it “Ramothopo the Centenarian”.

Where to from here?

Well, the film was finished a few days before the Encounters International Documentary Film Festival. The festival itself has always been the home ground of South African documentary cinema. So I’m thankful for their continued support of my work over the years. But with the Ramothopo, I truly thought that this time around they will be rejecting my work!

The film has possibly the longest documentary film shot that I know of. It’s a black and white film. It’s about old age. Yet, the maturity of their film selection and their ability to appreciate documentary cinema implies that South African documentary has a great future under their curatorship. So long live Encounters!

Obviously, we’d like to have the film broadcast. It is the centenary year of Nelson Mandela. If ever a film reflects the lives of our ordinary aged and feeble – this is the one.

I’m hoping a broadcaster will pick it up – so that we can translate some of the sweat, blood, and tears into bread, butter and attend to some requests their granddaughter has for her grandparents.

What advice do you give to aspiring creative is who look up to you?

It’s in the heart. That’s’ where it starts. Follow your instinct – even if it makes little sense. It’s not supposed to make sense – you are a filmmaker, not an actuary. If the final product has no resonance with your audience – move over to the next film. It’s a combination of your external physical craft and your internal filmmaker’s voice being honed. If the festival or funder rejects your work. Cry loud. Wipe your tears soldier. Eventually – it will all come together. You have to explore and discover through your cinematic choices who you really are.

And you have to push it. When you are young – it’s easy to close doors with your restless passion and vocal conflicting ideas. It’s fine. Let them close the doors. If you are able to stand up for what you believe and go hungry for it. Do it. It will only shape your character resulting in better work down the line.

When was the first time you were paid for your passion?

My first real paid job was when the National Film and Video Foundation funded my 26-minute documentary “A Fisherman’s Tale (2003).” When you consider how these guys are developing our industry, making huge financial investments in our development as film-makers – often granting us the license to explore our medium: regardless of its commercial value. We should applaud them for it.

Storytelling is an act of culture – their commitment ensured great vibrancy thereof. Furthermore, they managed to create a conducive environment to grow our talent and industry. If only our public broadcaster could come to the table in the same way. Could you imagine what positive impact that would have on the emergence of South African cinema?

 

 

 

#CreatePreneurAfrica- Mountaineer Monde Sitole, Peak performance “Reaching Heights of Soul Liberation”

 

A seasoned  mountaineer with a mission, Monde Sitole, adventurist, poet, and youth leader has achieved all that seems impossible. 

Born in the township of Khayelitsha, Cape Town, Monde Sitole's'Dare to Dream' expedition aimed at scaling all the highest peaks on every continent.

He has summited some of the highest peaks in the world and Africa highest peak,Kilimanjaro more than once! 

Monde Sitole was 16 when he sailed all over the globe, attending an onboard school on the SV  Concordia. The sailing vessel sailed all over the globe from Cape Town to  St Helena, Namibia, Fernando Island, Ascension Island, Brazil, Trinidad,  Bermuda, Tobago, and  London.

Representing Africa at the Pangaea Mike Horn camp for young explorers, Sitole’s spark of exploration and his inner desire to spread hope ignited.

From Africa’s highest Kilimanjaro in Tanzania to  Europe highest peak Russia’s  Mount Elbrus and the highest peak in North America, Denali in Alaska, he aims to keep conquering. He plans an adventure of climbing Mt Everest next without any bottled oxygen!

Nominations and Awards

  • “One of Nine Bravest Men We Know” ,by Men’s Health magazine
  •  “Heart Of Gold Bravest Men We Know”, awards by  Intrepid Explorer magazine
  • Honorary award at City of Cape Town’s Khayelitsha Awards.

Sitole dedicates time to help youth overcome challenges that seem insurmountable. The lessons learned in world adventures and travels have become his tools to inspire hope in others, to aspire, believe and achieve.

South Africa is reaching new heights with the Monde Sitole Foundation, stepping stones for the youth of Africa to spearhead their own destinies with impact and meaning in an integrated, holistic approach in the realms of education.

 

Education is more than just getting a job!

 The Monde Sitole Foundation focuses on youngsters in townships and remote areas in South Africa. The aim of the foundation is producing compassionate beings and high achievers. The ultimate aim is reducing school repetitions and dropouts and instilling hope for Africa’s future.

 

When I’m on a mountain I carry the suppressed dreams of every township kid on my backpack .

Monde Sitole

Meet CreatepreneurAfrica – Mountaineer Monde Sitole

 

Tell us what drives you? What is your true passion in life?

I always say when I’m on a mountain I carry the suppressed dreams of every township kid on my backpack.

My mission is firm and stern,  that is to reinvigorate that latent potential in all to grab hold of their dreams no matter how big, small or absurd they might seemingly appear.

Einstein said” an object continues to move in a direction unless a force is exerted.

“ I am that force”

How did you find your passion and how old were you?

Growing up I’ve always been precocious. My first question is what sparked everything: “Do blind people dream in pictures? ‘

Next thing I knew from the age of 14, I was reading the likes of  Carl Jung, Bertrand Russel, and George Santayana. I went from one religion to the other…questioning.

I always say one thing led to another. I’ve always dreamt Niagara Falls. The first country I visited was Canada when I sailed on SV Concordia attending class. Afloat a shipboard school where we sailed from Cape town to Bermuda island.

What I’ve discovered is that fear and doubt are actually not taboos as society status quo might like us to think , but within fear is when you find your truest version of yourself and within doubt is where you find the most potent version of the truth ….so only those who risk going far can really find out how far they can really go. Ts Eliot once said.

What about your passion appeals to you the most? 

The Wanderlust has lured me to the seven lonely seas. 

Has dumped me on the tailing-piles of dearth.

The Wanderlust has haled me from the Morris chairs of ease.

Has hurled me to the ends of all the earth.

How bitterly I’ve cursed it, oh, the Painted Desert knows

The wraithlike heights that hug the pallid plain,

The all-but-fluid silence, — yet the longing grows and grows

And I’ve got to glut the Wanderlust again.

I’m a wanderlust by nature. I think we all are the is no success no failure just life and what you piece together.

What drove you to make money from your passions?

That has never been my aim.  Making money is a science and if you follow few laws and systems you eventually get the knack.  My main mission is to develop Africa .

“Our people are not fighting for ideas but tangible things to make their lives better”- Cabral.

W.E.B Du Bois said  “Now is the accepted time, not tomorrow, not some more convenient season. It is today that our best work can be done and not some future day or future year. It is today that we fit ourselves for the greater usefulness of tomorrow. Today is the seed time, now are the hours of work, and tomorrow comes to the harvest and the playtime.”

These are pertinent words indeed.

But we cannot dwell on them unless we fully comprehend that we first need to approach our challenges with the will and imperativeness they so desire, or else we will always fall short wishing on shooting stars and building sand castles.

This is primarily aimed at power, it is urgent that leaders fast realize power is, in fact, a noble privilege, to serve, to lead and be led. A mutual enabler and equalizer much like a hammer in that you can either destroy with it or build a new era altogether.

Unless we invest in education, free quality education that is, founded on people, innovative, empowering and engaging.

Unless that time we cannot speak. When we talk about education we not simply talking about you getting a job and living it out in a posh life, but we marginally talking about advancement of Africa, decreasing the brain drain and skills development, capacity building, a nation that is self-sufficient, functioning, independent, can partake, innovate and adapt to increasingly globalised world.

When was the first time you were paid for your passion?

For keynote, I did for Ackerman’s end of the year Gala event when I was 15 years and same week I did another talk as Cipla Ambassador when Cipla was facing troubles I was one of strategist that came to share few insights.

What kept you going when you thought about giving up? 

The is a wish then the is an intent until you transform that wish into an intent you can never fully live your dream. Your purpose.

What motivates you every day to be even more successful?

What do you have to say to all of the people who doubted you? You can hate me, you can love me, but you can’t ignore me.

What advice do you give to aspiring creative is who look up to you?

The impossible exists because we don’t strive to make it possible

 

Venture into the world of magnificence. #ExploremotherlandAfrica

#CreatePreneurAfrica – Poetically speaking : Mak Manaka

Never at a loss for words, renowned South African poet Mak Manaka tunes into soul rhyme in his rooted "arts for transformation" soul calling. 

Mak Manaka brings out the word,to the people....to the nation!
Mak Manaka @MakManaka  Award winning poet and writer.

Poetry-101-with-Mak-Manaka-and-Likwid-Tongue

His full name , Maakomele, means to represent in Pedi, and so he does! The motivating “warrior of inspiration” voices out  his poetically engaging word.

His late father was a poet, playwright as well as a painter. His mother an actress dancer and choreographer.  He was born into a realm of  ‘Art for social transformation.’

He has  proudly represented South Africa in Jamaica, Spain, and Cuba, and performed for the prolific Nelson Mandela as well!

Moving around on crutches due to a historic misfortune does not dampen his spirit as he ”words on”……..

Meet CreatePreneurAfrica- Mak Manaka

Tell us what drives you? 

It’s the knowledge that I’m alive and doing what makes me alive.

What is your true passion in life?

My true passion is the battle in articulating the conditions of truth. So the search for my true self is, in essence, my true passion.

How did you find your passion and how old were you?

Well, passion found me in my mother’s womb and ever since I’ve been trying to understand why this passion. Coming from a family of artists, my late father is a playwright, painter and poet, and my mother a dancer-choreographer and an actress. So from an early age passion has been life to me.

What about your passion appeals to you the most?

I’m yet to receive an answer from passion itself. One thing I know about passion is that it pays no bills but it does make rainy days seem like summer skies. I guess it’s the self-fulfillment of self-worth that appeals to me the most.

 What drove you to make money from your passions?

Like I said, passion pays no bills. Self-determination pays the bills, not my passion. I think it’s important for us to unpack the meaning and function of the word passion to ourselves. How do you understand your passion and is it passion or self-determination that makes earns you a living within the construct of capitalism?

 

When was the first time you were paid for your passion?

To be honest with you, I’m still waiting for the day I get paid for my passion and I doubt that day will come coz my passion is nor for sale. On the other hand, I was about 21 when I got my first paycheck for a performance, poetry articulates condition, then it is my honor and privilege to have such a gift and be paid to share it.

What kept you going when you thought about giving up?  

It is the thought itself that keeps me going. We don’t give up or give in at any point coz we are suns, who wear heat in our hearts. Giving up is not an option but to give and share the heat with others is our main purpose as Africans.

What motivates you every day to be even more successful?

The love for loving life…

What do you have to say to all of the people who doubted you?

Don’t doubt your self, rather support your self and buy my books.

What advice do you give to aspiring creative is who look up to you?

“Look not to the stars but to your self” coz “to thine self, be true”-Shakespeare said both those quotes a long time ago and before I can tell anyone anything I have to tell my self. So before you leave the house, look at yourself and smile and be in love with the mirror. In the mirror is the sun inside looking back at you, so look to self to be selfless.

CreatePreneurAfrica -Tastebud treats from Chef Li

READY WITH A SENSATIONAL MENU  to tantalize all TASTEBUDS, meet Createpreneur Africa, Chef Li.

Linda Nirina Rojohasina Mazibuko, born in the culturally and culinary diverse island of Madagascar, eventually relocated to her father’s homeland, South Africa. Chef Li’s cooking styles from multiple influences topple divine and delectable taste sensations.

Growing up with her mother, a musician from Madagascar, and her grandmother in South Africa , her Zulu heritage was a divine fusion into the mixture of Madagascar cooking style delights.

A member of ‘Çhefs in Africa’ she ranked amongst the top ten of Top Chefs in SA.

After graduating at a culinary art school in South Africa, she has been a key contributor to respected kitchens all over Africa. Trained by prominent chefs, she has designed delectable brands of influence.

Instagram @chefli_
Twitter @chefmazibuko
Facebook Page: ChefLi

 

1. What drives you?

The only thing that drives me is my passion. It’s the idea that food brings so much joy to the soul as well as nations together.

2. What is your true passion in life?

My true passion in life is love expressed through food and music. Every time I am in the kitchen I feel like I am creating a symphony of flavors. I like to listen to classical music while cooking. I also sing at my local church called Hillsong Johannesburg.

3. How did you find your passion? How old were you?

I found my passion for music when I was about 3 or 4 years old. My grandfather was a legendary musician in Madagascar and I used to follow him everywhere, as my mother recalls.

My passion for food started when I was about 9 years old, I used to sit in the kitchen watching my mother cook our meals. It was fascinating to me.

Eventually, she let me cook with her when I got a little bit older, surprisingly I went to WITS University after school but ended up dropping out because I couldn’t stop thinking about being a Chef. LOL! My mother was freaked out about it but my dad was very supportive.

Eventually, she began to see how I was flourishing & finally understood that this is what I was made for.

4. What about your passion appeals to you the most?

What appeals to me the most is that it brings people together from all walks of life. There are no stereotypes or silly debates about it. It’s just something that makes everyone happy and brings healing to the soul.

5. What drove you to make money from your passions?

Well, it is my bread and butter, I don’t see myself slaving away behind an office desk all day so I need to cook to live. But I do this mostly out of love. Don’t let me cook for you when I am sad or depressed, it’s going to be horrible. I cook with my soul.

6. When was the first time you were paid for your passion?

I was first paid when a family friend asked me to bake a cake for them.

7. What kept you going when you thought of giving up?

My one friend, Tiffany, keeps me going through her words of encouragement. She knows me so well and always knows how to get me out of the ruts I tend to put myself into (LOL). I tend to doubt myself sometimes. The last time I was about to give up, she got me back on track and then TOP CHEF SA contacted me.

8. What motivates you every day to become more successful?

What motivates me is the fact that I am the first real chef in my family. Also, because I am a mixed breed child, I have two families to make proud.

9. What do you have to say to all the people who doubted you?

I don’t really have much to tell them, I like to work and produce in silence. They will just see the fruits.

10. What advice do you give to aspiring creatives who look up to you?

I would like to tell them to embrace and enjoy their journeys. Not everyone is going to make it in the same way, at the same time. You’re never too old or too young to start something, use what you have, the rest will follow.

 

Welcome #ExploreMotherlandAfrica

The other side of Table Mountain – Cape Town


Planning to travel in Africa?  The magnificent Table Mountain is a drawing card and the starting point is the infamous Cape Town for most… today we look over and behind Table Mountain.
Table Mountain

The perks of traveling to Africa are endless. Instead of scanning the game parks for rhino or setting off for a day sampling Cape chardonnays, take a  look at the other side.

The townships of Cape Town….. You inhale the roots of freedom, exhaling air of human rights, justice, and reconciliation. A flow from shebeens to sangomas, the emotional sensory vibe sets you sparkling off with a vivid social culture. Nothing is amiss as every township bubbles with its own unique story about its struggles and how it evolved and revolved to its current state.

A treasure in the center of Cape Town – Bo-Kaap

Bo-Kaap

Beyond the hustles and bustles, just beyond the city of Cape Town, you find Bo-Kaap.

The “Bo Kaap” is one of the most interesting parts of Cape Town culturally and historically. Colorful houses, steep cobbled streets, the muezzin’s calls to prayer, and children traditionally dressed for Madrassa add to this unique Cape experience. It is a multicultural area, tucked into the fold of signal hill. Use the cobblestoned streets as your guide and you will be lead into a lively suburb filled with brightly colored houses from the nineteenth and seventeenth century, shrines of Muslim saints, an abundance of beautiful Mosques, and the very first mosque that existed in South Africa.

Use the cobblestoned streets as you are lead into a lively suburb filled with brightly colored houses from the nineteenth and seventeenth century, shrines of Muslim saints, an abundance of beautiful Mosques, and the very first mosque that existed in South Africa.

The residents of Bo-Kaap are mostly descended from slaves who were imported to the Cape by the Dutch during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. They came from Africa, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, and Java Malaysia. Some of them were political exiles and convicts. They were known as “Cape Malays”, which is incorrect as most of Bo-Kaap’s residents are not entirely of Malaysian descent. Their many Indonesian traces of vocabulary in the dialect of Cape, for example, “trim-

They were known as “Cape Malays”, which is incorrect as most of BoKaap’s residents are not entirely of Malaysian descent. Their many Indonesian traces of vocabulary in the dialect of Cape, for example, “trim-makaasi” thank-you, as well as  “kanalah” please! There are also many words, which have also been substituted with Afrikaans.

Funnily enough, Afrikaans evolved as a language of its own through a simplification of Dutch so that the slaves could communicate with the Dutch and each other since they all came from different countries and cultures. Muslims were the first to write texts in Afrikaans.
Cape Carnival

Each year on the 2nd of January, the Bo-Kaap celebrates a big street party, the “Coon Carnival” in the center of town. It was originally introduced by the Muslim slaves who celebrated their only day off work in the whole year. Nowadays men, woman, and children march from the Grand Parade to the Green Point stadium, singing, and dancing.

 

Kramat

Kramats or Muslim Shrines are burial sites of Saints of Islam. Cape Town residents have for a number of generations paid their respects these Shrines. There are three Karamats in Bo Kaap, and Signal Hill behind BoKaap has two.

 

 

Bo-Kaap Museum

One of the oldest buildings in Wale Street 71 houses the “Bo-Kaap Museum”. It is necessary to see since it feels like your stepping back in time. Built in by Jan de Waal in 1768, the museum was originally the home of Abu Bakr Effendi, a well-known Turkish scholar and prominent leader in the Muslim community. He was brought here in the mid-19th century to help quell feuding between Muslim factions and is believed to have written one of the first books in Afrikaans. The house has been furnished to re-create the lifestyle of a typical Malay family in the 19th century within a national socio-political and cultural context. Look for works by artist Gregoire Boonzaire, who’s famous for capturing the chaos and charm of neighborhoods such as the Bo-Kaap and District Six.

The Dutch brought slaves that were skilled artisans, political exiles, artisans, religious leader’s famous scholars, and convicts too. Islam, who roots started in Saudi Arabia some 1400 years ago, was brought to the Cape in the 1700’s. Skills and talents passed down from generation to generation accompanied these slaves. Not only skilled artisan but also superb cooks and cuisines blossomed. The Cape Malay Cuisine is not only delicious but also unique and has played a huge role in South African dishes.

A township tour can be one of the most illuminating and life-affirming experiences you will ever have.

 

The Soul of Township Tours in South Africa

The Tales of South African Townships

Township in South Africa reflects the celebration of joy in human rights, freedom, justice and reconciliation. From the experience of shebeens to visits with sangomas.

A township visit is an emotional and unique sensory experience that is abuzz with the vivid social culture. Each township tells a story of its own about how it was established, the struggle through the years of apartheid and the current age it has evolved into.

South African townships have an irresistible soul and vibe that will welcome you and give you the experience of a lifetime!

Alex  –  “Township of Rhythm”

Alexandra Township -Gauteng

Alexandra is affectionately known as ‘Alex’, it is  Gauteng’s oldest township. Initially, it was established as a residential area. This was in 1905 by a white farmer. He aimed for a white suburb and named it after his wife. In 1912 it was transformed into a native township. Black people were allowed land ownership.

In 1913 the land act dissolved land ownership rights by blacks. Alexandra continues in migration as it was close in proximity to the employment opportunities in Johannesburg.

‘Alex’ has an interesting and turbulent and past, a fascinating present, and a very promising future.  It also has it’s own community radio and TV station.

Alex is the hub of culture, root culture is rhythm and vibe.  Alex has been home to luminaries like Hugh Masekela, a renowned jazz maestro as well as Nelson Mandela.

Popular culture like theaters in the townships was a dynamic force which gave life and hopes to the people, it’s a dynamic force that gave hope.

A township tour will give assess to the best shebeens in where you can quench your thirst on the tradition umqombothi, an African beer that is home-brewed, and taste amazing local delicacies.

You can also stock up on arts and crafts from street vendors, curios and explore the world colorful traditional medicine world.

The outdoor markets, the St Hulbert Catholic church, Mandela Yard Precinct and traditional healers create a fascinating new and old blend making Alex a fascinating township tour.

A Visit to  the iconic township of Soweto

Soweto is the fifth most popular destination for overseas visitors to the Gauteng province. It’s ‘Jozi’s’ tourism drawcard.  And one of the biggest attractions is the Mandela Museum, in Vilakazi Street.  The former four-roomed home of Nelson and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela is a deeply moving experience, that reminds us of our past, and gives us hope for the future.

The Hector Pieterson Memorial is three blocks from where 13-year-old Hector was shot and died on 16 June 1976, the day when students in Soweto marched against the repressive imposition of  the Afrikaans language in schools

Soweto tours start with,  Hector Pieterson Museum and the Regina Mundi church.No trip to Soweto in Johannesburg is complete without a visit to Regina Mundi, the largest Catholic Church in the most popular Soweto.

It’s been a spiritual haven for thousands of Sowetans, it has also played a pivotal role in the township’s history of resistance against apartheid.

The Ubuntu Kraal is a collection of straw-roofed rondavels that form a homestead, popular as a wedding and conference venue.

Many will also be interested in the Soweto  Festival. The Soweto Festival is held annually

Soweto Festival

The venue is the magnificent Walter Sisulu Square in Kliptown, the site of the signing of the historic Freedom Charter by anti-apartheid organizations in 1955.

This is the ideal place for the people of Soweto to congregate over Heritage weekend as the Square is a national monument.

The Soweto Festival centers around an exhibition and day-long entertainment events.

 The  capturing visit to Katlehong

Katlehong

The Katlehong township area smoldered with political tension in the early 1990s and the name was associated with violent protests and a low-level civil war amongst factions.

This, however, is a thing of the past and in some way seems to make the Art Centre even more of an achievement for being there. Some of the most exquisite examples of ethnic artwork are housed here and the center seems to have been as influenced by the emotional turmoil of the township as its inhabitants once were.

 

Welcome to motherland Africa! Welcome to South Africa!

 

 

 

South Africa’s Cultural Soul – The roots of Township Tours

South Africa – few can rival South African soul in the townships. Today we explore Kwa-Zulu Natal.  Walking the paths of some of the greatest leaders.

It’s another world and another time. This is part of the old Africa, where the amaZulu ruled unchallenged, a place of beaded headdresses and rawhide shields, beehive huts, and a lifestyle that properly belongs to the great age of Shaka.

Gain an insight into the amaZulus’ traditional way of life their beliefs, crafts, songs and dances at Shakaland, the open-air museum near Eshowe.

This is the oldest town in Zululand. Shakaland is also the oldest Zulu Cultural Village in Zululand, originally built as a scenery for the movie “Shaka Zulu”.

It’s been converted into a Zulu homestead with thatched beehive houses arranged in a circle around the central cattle kraal. Visitors stay in beehive houses, with all the modern conveniences.

 

The village overlooking the Umhlatuze Lake offers the true Zulu cultural experience and traditions, including pottery, beadwork, beer making and tasting as well as magnificent foot-stomping, ground shaking demonstrations of traditional Zulu dance.

Assegai-wielding warriors will teach you how to fight. You can also witness the age-old methods of making spears and shields, skills that are to a large extent disappearing. This is one of the few men who still know how to make the broad stabbing spear introduced by King Shaka. A memorable part of the tour is the spear throwing and stick-fighting demonstrations.

The  Memorable Adventures of Zululand

Kwa-Zulu Natal

The Kwa-Zulu Natal province is rooted in the legacy of the Zulu nation. There are ample opportunities to explore the fascinating world of the Zulu’s.

There are many private as well as provincial game reserves showcasing the abundance of biodiversity in the region.  You get an authentic safari experience and a historical viewpoint through the battlefield routes of the historical town, Vryheid which has  tea plantations and cattle ranches.

The Battlefields Route is significant as it was is where there were historical clashes between Zulu,  Brit, and Boer (farmer). The Kwa Zulu Natal battlefield region extends from Thukela river at Dolphin coast to Richards Bay further in the north to Paulpietersburg.

Paulpietersburg is 50hm to the north and links the inland of South Africa with the coast of  Zululand. This town is widely known for sulfur springs and therapeutic spas.

The major attractions are Zulu culture, birdlife, and many nature and game reserves.

Zulu culture is all over South Africa, but not as poignant as the Zulu kingdom.

Visitors can feel and taste true Zulu hospitality in dance, food, and song. There is an opportunity to become part of authentic Zulu weddings, assist with chores in the village and even visit a local sangoma (traditional healer).

You can take an ox-wagon visit to the Zulu beehive huts. Or even explore local shebeens, traditional medicine outlets. You get to learn how locals adapt age-old traditions into modern living.

 

  • A Zululand heritage experience is by stopping at Melmoth ‘where the legend King Shakas was born ‘the Valley of Kings’
  • The Emakhosini Valley is the site of graves of many Zulu Kings
  • The Zululand Birding Route has 650 recorded species of birds. The Dlinza Nature Reserve is a popular spot for birding.
  • Vast nature and game reserves from subtropical forest reserves  along the coast as well as game reserves further north

The biggest attraction in the KZN region is Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park.

It is the oldest in Africa and home to the famous big 5 in Africa. Rhinos, drive game lions, elephants, buffalos and leopards. There are self-drive game as well as guided walks.

 

Wilderness trails provide an intimate experience in the bush

End the Zululand expedition round off will be Richards Bay. The large town boasts a stunning scenery of the wetland.

 

Welcome to Motherland Africa......

 

Tu Nokwe ‘Light of Africa’ -The Morogoro JUU AFRIKAN FESTIVAL 2017

We tuned together in rhymes of Unison…..

 

 

 

 

We stood together in times of Unison……

 

 

We share our spirits in harmony and Light - 'Light of Africa' our soul.........

#JUUAFRIKANFESTIVAL

Keeping together across our continent borders . We touch base……

 

Welcome to the Light of Africa

Tanzania Tanzania……

The Juu Afrikan festival in Morogoro

The Light of Africa ‘Tu Nokwe’ in Morogoro Tanzania -JUU Afrikan Festival

Welcome. #ExploremotherlandAfrica

 

10 ‘Must See’ Destinations in the Diverse and Colorful South Africa

Many are eager to explore South Africa, the diverse colorful nation with tons to rave about from natural beauty,people,world cities and unique wildlife.

Cape Town deservingly captures global attention, yet South Africa has much more to offer. There are hundreds of destinations to explore in South Africa. Here are ten highlights to note.

 

 

 

  1. Cape Agulhas


ATLANTIC AND INDIAN OCEAN MEET, THE SOUTHERN TIP OF AFRICA

Cape  Agulhas is the tip of Africa, where our two great oceans meet, a stone plaque to mark it is placed on the beach.

2.  Table Mountain


Any trip to Cape Town has an activity that all must step up to. A journey to the iconic Table Mountain. An unforgettable landmark to set foot on. You get to view the sea and the city from a 1085m height. The flat top summit has an easy route with the Table Mountain Cableway. It travels up at 10 metres per second. Table mountain has much more to explore with indigenous plants and animals and a nature reserve.

3. Maboneng Precinct- Johannesburg


Maboneng Precinct

Maboneng means the  “place of light”, and that is what the innovative section, the Maboneng Precinct, has become amidst a concrete jungle of red brick construction and warehouse jumbles. The graffiti spilt sidewalks reach an urban vibe, the hippest urban regeneration spot – a cosmopolitan and arty joint. Joburg is re-identifying itself from the slaps of being a wasteland of lost wanderers.

 one of South Africa’s hippest urban enclaves and an incredible example of urban regeneration.” BBC TRAVEL

4. Klein Karoo – Cango Caves


Cango Caves

The Cango Caves are as popular as the ostriches in Oudtshoorn 30 km away. The caves cut from limestone are twenty million years old. The Caves are listed as one of the great natural wonders of the world. The hidden stalagmite chambers inhabited in the stone ages make up the largest cave system in Africa.

There are amazing subterranean caverns open to the public for an unforgettable adventure through tunnels and chambers. One highlight is ‘Cleopatras Needle’, a formation that is 9m high and over 150000 years old.

5. Golden Gate Highlands National Park


The name of the park. ‘Golden’ Gate  Highlands National Park is linked to the golden glittering sandstone cliffs. Located in the Northern Freee State 120km from Bloemfontein, the Maluti  Mountains nestle the park, home to various wildlife including wildebeest and zebra as well as rare birds like the bearded vulture and bald ibis. There is an abundance of activity from horseriding to nature trails and game viewing.

6. Midlands Meander


Midlands Meander

The most recognizable meander in Kwa Zulu Natal offers many discovery routes through the scenic Midlands Meander of Natal. An hour away from Durban, the Meander is 80kms of entertainment, arts and crafts. places to see, shops and over 160 places to sleep in. Encounter craftsmen from herb growers to cheese producers weavers and craft beer, artists, potters, carvers and much more.A haven for watersports enthusiasts for sailing, canoeing, boating and windsurfing near the Midmar Dam.

7. Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park


Kgagaladi Transfrontier Park

Africa’s first transborder conservation area between Botswana and South Africa. It is in the Northern Cape, 250km from Upington, the Kgalagadi Park is the joining of Botswana’s Gemsbok National Park and South Africa’s Kalahari GemsbokPark.

The combined protected area is thirty-eight thousand square kilometres.  In South Africa, part of nine thousand six hundred square kilometres covers the Southern part of the Kalahari desert which is uninhabited.  It offers great opportunities for game viewing of endangered and rare species.

8. Supertubes Jeffreys Bay


Supertubes Jefferys Bay Surfing

Jeffreys Bay, sixty-five kilometres from Port Elizabeth is a top surfing destination and has perfect and predictable right-hand Supertube point breaks

The high-speed waves reach 3 metres varying in length up to 300m. The best waves are in winter between May and the middle of September.

9. Moses Mabhida Stadium


Moses Mabhida Stadium

The Moses Mabhida stadium is popular for hosting international music concerts and sports.It is a tourist attraction with many other linked activities. It has a skycar taking visitors to the arch of the stadium, there is also the 500 step adventure walk up to the 106m arch to get the ultimate panoramic view of the sea and the city. Then there is the Big Rush, Big Swing, a stadium swing that plunges off the arch. There are restaurants and shopping boutiques on the property as well.

10. Sun City


Sun City

Sun City, an hour and a half away from Johannesburg is a popular complex for entertainment and family getaways. Hotels coupled with a popular golf course is a drawcard for tourists and locals. Many regularly flock here to enjoy the Valley of Waves, the casino for gambling and game viewing at the Pilanesberg National Park nearby. The Lost city Palace offers a five-star Africa holiday and has cabanas, game lodges and establishments for camping nearby.

 

 

Welcome to the tastes of Africa.  #ExploreMotherlandAfrica

 

The Light Of Africa – Ready to Shine at the JUU Afrikan Festival,Tanzania2017

Igniting “Khanyisa”, the light of Africa into Tanzania in 2015, Tu Nokwe hailed sparkling testimony that light of Africa cannot die out.

The ‘Light of Africa’ , Tu Nokwe, blessed the heart of motherland Africa, Tanzania on various special occasions in 2015.

A blissful melody of liberating tunes left heart beats echoing with rhythm and souls pulsating with sounds of Africa at the renowned Bagamoyo Festival.

Many fundraising projects were initiated for further development. One of them was AMAP (“The Africa Modern Arts Project”). Based in the historical town of Bagamoyo, AMAP serves as a community-based learning centre with a mission to harbour and guide local talent, helping artists to polish skill and flourish as professionals.

Joyful vocals brightening the gloom with a soulful blend of jazz and funk sprouted with a new age twist at performances and workshops at Dhow Countries Music Academy in Zanzibar.

According to DCMA director Mitchel Strumpf, Ms. Nokwe visited Zanzibar during the time of the Zanzibar Film Festival and participated in activities of the Festival. She conducted a workshop for the Certificate and Diploma students at the Dhow Countries Music Academy and performed as a special guest during a concert by the DCMA's Taarab-Kidumbak Ensemble. That visit was a trail-blazer for future visits, an opening of the door to see the interests of people for thinking about music and music-making from the standpoint of music being healthy for broadening the soul of a person, including the sharing of musical sounds like sharing food at a dinner.

“Her voice is magnificent and the music projects she and her family have been doing in South Africa hopefully will associate with the activities of DCMA and other schools of music traditions from African cultures in other parts of Africa to form an Association of Schools of Traditional African Music. This idea was discussed in detail while she was at DCMA. While in Zanzibar previously, Ms Nokwe also gave a master class in singing and African song styles.

The design of her programme was to boost self-esteem and inspiration with creative interaction, music and storytelling with self-management and life skills workshops, jam sessions and talent showcases. An opportunity for Africa to share all they excel in.

 "Africa needs ongoing inspiration and motivation to maintain happy societies" Tu Nokwe

calling to Tanzania has returned as crowds yearn for her return.

Intricate harmonies and blissful guitar rhythms ensemble a rise into the realm of open avenues of possibilities, inspiration and empowerment.

Guest of honour Tu Nokwe will be accompanied by none other than the legendary Dorothy Masuka with a group of five children.

Dorothy rose to fame in the revolutionary era of the 1950’s and aspires to share her wisdom with the upcoming generation to explore the magnificent continent they are from.

Dorothy Masuka

Her voice evoked global applause. Her songs catapulted many South African artists to fame, Her music spoke of the times. She’s an international icon, role model, artist, mother, grandmother, family caregiver, composer, singer, musician, entertainer.

 

The history of the contribution of black women musicians would be incomplete without the story of Dorothy Masuka whose musical compositions still inspire young and old musicians today.

 

 

 

 

The Juu Afrikan Arts and Culture festival in Morogoro has launched.

The main festival themes encompass a revival,  a preservation, and revamping authentic legendary tribal African root tunes and music. The fusion of new compositions that integrate contemporary creations with an authentic rhyme influx and beats, celebrating true African heritage with soul music. The initial festival featured sparked of with Ruguru culture. The festival launched into branches of tribe celebrations, paying homage to heritage with cultural performances encompassing unique tribal stories, songs, plays, dances films and narratives.

  • JUU celebrates the heritage of  Motherland Africa in Tanzania.  The vital role of education promotes a culture of reading and awareness
  • JUU Afrika Festivals works with schools located in mostly rural villages where the roots and values of Tanzanian culture must be protected. JUU understands the importance of learning and takes positive action to achieve it.
  • Juu Afrika Festival accentuates the need for producers and consumers of validated information and quality publications for education, business and government to promote a culture of reading and awareness of the value of historic archives, libraries and museums.
  • Tanzanian and African history cannot get lost. 
  • Arts and culture is vital for prosperity on the continent. Africa needs to take control of their collective economic destiny and suppport each other
  • Jilinde: Protect yourself mentally by changing our neo-colonialist attitudes that prevent us from realizing our potential while also maintaining high morals.
  • “Emancipate yourself from mental slavery” – Bob Marley
  • Ulindwe:  “Guard and protect others by sharing positive ideas and work together.” 
  • Harambee: People should be responsible for well-being and safety of others.
  • We must preserve nature–not destroy it.

The time has come for Africa. Tune in…..


In blissful melody of the tunes, souls pulsated and heart beats echoed with the rhythm. Sparks brightened the gloom: The time is now. 'Light of Africa' : Share the 'Light of Africa' follow facebook.com/tu.nokwe and join in on the group Khanyisa-Light of Africa https://facebook.com/groups/568415699980068/?view=group