The South African Mzansi Ballet (and can I just say that I love that the Mzansi bit), part of the Joburg Theatre is exactly 2.1km from home for me and for some reason (unbeknown to me), I haven’t been there before. Ok I did try to get a bunch of friends together once (at least a few years ago when I lived some 30+ kms away ironically), but they weren’t keen. So last night I took me, myself and I to the ballet for just 80 bucks as part of the Joburg City Festival.
The hour-long show included highlights from Cinderella, Don Quixote, Diana and Actaeon, The Dying Swan, Flower Festival at Genzano, Flames Of Paris and Giselle as well as from contemporary works Carmina Burana, I Am and Use Somebody. Needless to say I didn’t recognise anything from that list on the programme as I took my seat last night except for Cinderella & Giselle! I don’t think you need to “know” ballet to appreciate it. It incredibly beautiful and at the end of the hour I just sat there for a bit hoping for an encore.
I mentioned before that I once had this dream of doing ballet that got busted when I was around 10 and since then I have always looked at ballet dancers in awe. Between their amazing bodies & sheer grace I was pretty much mesmerized for the hour & had to remind myself to take some pictures (& this little video)…
I also happened to sit next to two ballet “students” during the show. I say “students” because they’re not pros & don’t want to be. They’ve taken up ballet classes at the SAMB recreationally twice a week and have zero experience. Classes run Mondays and Wednesdays at 6pm for R60 for an hour and a half (who knew!?) and all you need is tights (whatever you have home will do) and some ballet slippers (prices vary but start from R120). They tell me it’s an ah-mazing workout…
You can catch the last performance of the SAMB as part of the Joburg City Festival this evening at 6pm. Booking are via Edgar Moagi on
011 877 6898 or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you miss it (and you really shouldn’t), there are two big events on the upcoming SAMB calendar:
Cinderella – (we all know this one right?!) from the 13th to the 29th September
Celebration 5, their collaboration with a Colombian dance company El Colegio del Cuerpo running from September 20th to 28th.
It’s easy to see why (even not as a mom) being a ballet dancer is every little girl’s dream. Oh & parents in case you’re wondering, kids from 3 years old upwards are welcome at all shows.
Separately I’m feeling really proud of myself that I’ve been to theatre 3 times in as many weeks (& a little pressured to keep it up!).