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What is Sound and Soil about?

Sound and Soil is a live, collaborative, and experimental performance that took place in Nababeep, South Africa. Situated in the far Northern Cape Province, 50 kms north of Springbok and 65 kms from the Namibian border post Vioolsdrift, the performance included a collaboration with the Nama Stap Dansers from Steinkopf. Sound and Soil is the Creative Output of a year-long artistic research, in collaboration with VIAD and in association with the University of Johannesburg. In our collective research, artist-researchers Kagiso Kekana and Sonya Rademeyer have explored Mycelium (fungi) as a metaphor for deepening cultural interconnectedness in Southern Africa. Mycelium exists as the binder to the overall project and images of Mycelium will be incorporated via video projections into the dance exploration through artistic practice. Over the past year we have developed respectful relationships with various indigenous and traditional African healers. Listening to these healers and how their healing practices are connected to a larger cosmology and spiritual belief system, we have sought to understand how indigenous and traditional African healing practices might assist in contributing towards greater cultural healing in South Africa. A particular question has been how western individuality might be bridged to facilitate such healing, listened to from the healers' perspectives. The following healers’ voices form a central part to the project, and their invaluable contributions will dynamically influence the live dance performance in Nababeep : Plant/Spirit healer San vibrational healer Inyanga healer Western Sangoma healer isiXhosa/Nguni sound healer Western Phytologist healer Co-collaborating in the project is Marianna Dixon Williams (USA) who, through her artistic practice which include themes of loss and limits, will make valuable contributions to the performance. The Sound and Soil performance took place 1-8 June 2023.

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