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Indoni Australian Tour 2016

South African dance troupe to perform at the Seymour Centre in Sydney on Thursday, 3 November

A group of 14 amazing dancers is travelling to Australia for one-off performances in Perth and Sydney, representing the Indoni Dance, Arts and Leadership Academy. Coming from severely disadvantaged backgrounds, this trip to Australia will be a life changing experience for these young black South Africans, giving them the opportunity to tell their stories through dance and music.

Indoni is headlining the Out of Africa festival in Perth, before travelling to Sydney to perform at the Seymour Centre on Thursday, 3 November and will visit NAISDA Dance College, participate in a cultural exchange with local indigenous groups, as well as being part of the Aboriginal cruise, Tribal Warrior.  Indoni arrives in Sydney on 31 October, staying for six days. To help fund the Australian tour, Indoni is also looking for individual and corporate contributions, through its GoFundMe page at https://www.gofundme.com/indoni. To date, the campaign has raised almost half of its goal of $20,000. This will help cover the costs of flights, accommodation, travel, meals and venue hire for the team of 14 performers and three supervisors during Indoni’s stay in Sydney.

Tickets for the Seymour Centre performance are available at  http://www.seymourcentre.com/events/event/indoni-soul-of-africa

“We hope to see everyone at the Seymour Centre on the 3rd of November,” said one of Indoni’s co-founders Balu Nivison. “If you can’t make it on the night, we would love for you to support our trip with a contribution through our GoFundMe page.”

Most of Indoni’s dancers grew up in South African ‘townships’, like Gugulethu in Cape Town, where Indoni is based.  The view from a shack in a Cape Town township doesn’t go very far. Outside one pieced together shelter, assembled from off cuts of wood and corrugated iron is another shack, and another and another. In winter a shack is cold, damp and dark. In summer, iron roof sheets bake under a harsh African sun. For most, an outside-shared tap is the only source of water, and a paraffin lamp the sole provider of light. All of Indoni’s dancers come from impoverished, disadvantaged families, and have been exposed to hardships and trauma that no young people should experience.

The performers’ individual stories are compelling, filled with overwhelming courage and beauty of the human spirit, and this comes through in their live performances.

Twenty-one year-old Olwethu Sotiya and his six brothers and sisters were raised by their grandmother in Gugulethu. He never knew his mother, and had an absent father who was abusive and violent whenever he saw him.  The family often went to bed hungry, and Olwethu had to start supporting the family when he was just 13. Over the years, a lot of people close to Olwethu have died, including a sister, and the pain of loss is ever-present. For Olwethu, being part of the Indoni Academy and performing with the dance group is an empowering and uplifting experience.

Indoni Dance, Arts and Leadership Academy was established in 2014 to provide professional training to youth who lack financial support and guidance, and wish to pursue careers in dance and integrated arts. Founded by Sbonakaliso Ndaba, Balu Nivison,  Dr Mamphela Ramphele,  and Jenny Papendorp as a pathway to youth development and upliftment,  Indoni transforms the lives of its young students through a dance and leadership program led by creative director Sbonakaliso Ndaba. Inspired by the late Steve Biko’s philosophy of ‘freeing the mind’, Indoni’s holistic approach trains body, mind and spirit, creating a space in which self-development and confidence are made possible.

Indoni honours the heritage of South Africa, with a contemporary African-centred approach. A vital component of the trainees’ education is the rekindling of hope, and the building of dignity and life skills. The Academy seeks to promote the arts as a channel for economic, personal and professional development.

In just two years Indoni has established a company of talented, passionate dancers dreaming a new future into being. A dedicated team of mentors and investors add their support to Indoni offering its young students and graduates the support, guidance and affirmation needed to redirect the course of their lives.

Indoni performances have captured the imagination of the South African public. Rousing dance narratives express the pain and struggle that is the legacy of apartheid, as well as the overwhelming courage and beauty of the human spirit. The recognition of both their intrinsic human value and their talent as dancers has proved powerful and transformational.

The trip to Australia is the troupe’s first outside its homeland, which Indoni hopes will be just the first of many international tours in the future.

Indoni’s Facebook page
Indoni’s GoFundMe campaign
Indoni performing at the 2015 Baxter Dance Festival
https://spaces.hightail.com/space/9QhHp - link for photography and video
http://www.seymourcentre.com/events/event/indoni-soul-of-africa - Seymour Centre event information and ticket booking

Media Contact:

Merle Singer
Curve of the World
+61 419 636 230