Hillbrowfication © Constanza Macras

Space Tales - Future Cities

Urban architectures and spatial transformation in South Africa – funded by the TURN Fund

The issue of exclusion has always played a central role with respect to urban spaces. Although today’s world of globalised capitalism promotes universality and the fiction of multicultural tolerance, respect, human rights and democracy, the coexistence of many different lifestyles often leads to processes of outer and inner exclusion. This is heightened further by a diverse array of collective and political identities and interests, such as nationality, religious affiliation, ethnicity, sexual orientation and economic benefit.

The unique social and political history of South Africa and its current status as the strongest economic power on the African continent have emphasised the significance of these tensions in social, geographic and urban spaces. In view of the important role racial ideology once played in the territorial and urban planning policies of the former Apartheid regime, South Africans today regard the spatial transformation of their cities as a key strategy for addressing the past. The historical architectures of exclusion have long since merged with new ones; the current situation is strongly influenced by gross economic disparity within South African society, by the ghettoisation of the poor, the isolation of the affluent classes into gated communities, the high rate of criminality and violence, migration and xenophobia.

The project series “Space Tales - Futures Cities” by the international dance company Dorky Park explores the dynamics of exclusion and spatial urban transformation in South Africa in the context of socio-political developments and current art production. In cooperation with the Outreach Foundation and The Forgotten Angle Theatre Collaborative in Johannesburg, the Maxim Gorki Theater in Berlin, the Thalia Theater in Hamburg and the Festspielhaus Hellerau in Dresden, the project will present a series of events which are divided into three sub-projects:

“Super Local stories” features a series of small site-specific formats with artist-in-residence programmes and workshops at various locations in Johannesburg – predominantly in the former townships and the more rural urban outskirts. The productions will later be presented at Studio Verlin in Berlin. “Hillbrowfication” is a performance project with children and young adults ages five to nineteen about the life of migrants in the Hillbrow quarter of Johannesburg. The performances will take place at the Maxim Gorki Theater. The third project “Chatsworth” centres on the Indian community in Durban. The dance film production will be presented at the HAU in Berlin.

Artistic director: Constanza Macras (DE)

Artists: Ariel Efraim Ashbel (DE), Gerald Bester (ZA), Lizi Estaras (BE), Adham Hafez (EG), Roman Handt (ZA), Dean Hutton (ZA), Lucky Kele (ZA), Spoek Mathambo (ZA), Mandla Mathonsi (ZA), Hector Thami Manekehla (ZA), Ana Mondini (DE), Manuel Osterholt (DE), John Sithole (ZA), PJ Sabbagha (ZA), Tatiana Saphir (DE), Fana Tshabalala (ZA), Andrew Tshabangu (ZA), Jan Sebastian Suba (DE), Nicolas Vladyslav (BE)

25.08.2018 - 26.08.2018 HAU - Hebbel am Ufer, Berlin Film production "Chatsworth"
01.06.2018 - 03.06.2018 Maxim-Gorki Theater, Berlin Dance piece "Hillbrowfication”
15.09.2017 - 16.09.2017 Studio Verlin, Berlin Dance piece "In the heart of the country"

Super Local Stories:

"In the Heart of the country" with Fana Tshabalala, Emil Bordàs und Ana Mondini:
14.-28.2.2017 Residences in Mpumalanga (SA)
17.2.2017 Public showing - Festival My body My space in Mpumalanga (SA) 
2.3.17 & 3.3.2017 Premiere - Dance Umbrella Festival in Johannesburg (SA)

"A Place called Home" with Ana Mondini und Andrew Tshabangu:
4.-18.3.2017 Residences in Johannesburg / Momo Gallery
18.3.2017 Performance as part of the exhibition in the South Bank Gallery Johannesburg


9.3.2018 – Premiere „Hillbrowfication“, Hillbrow Theatre, Johannesburg (ZA), Festival Dance Umbrella
10.3.2018 – Public showing „Hillbrowfication“, Hillbrow Theatre, Johannesburg (ZA)