Dear Sis Dolly….
What’s good DN fam!!!
Its the month of March and as we MARCH on forward into our destiny, it is always beneficial to document the journey. Bearing this in mind, this week Dramatic Need participants have begun what I like to think of as “snippets of the ME I AM”. Armed each with a little notebook specially for this purpose. The kids will begin to document whatever they want to in relation to their experience with us here at the PPCAC throughout this 1st School Term.
Look out for what is to come….
Keeping it Moving… Teboho’s weekly update
Hello Hi Dramatic Need Family!!!
Its been a while… but I can guarantee that we have certainly not been resting on our laurels. In fact, It would be fair to say that at this point; Its ‘All Systems Go’ here at the Pieta Patsa Community Arts Centre (PPCAC). These youth are moving from strength to strength and this up coming month is sure to be nothing less than FIREWORKS!!!
With the “aHA!” moments that seems to be happening frequently lately and for the development of each child at their own pace; and of course my sanity, I could not be more pleased.
There is something to be said of all the other things that happen around classes. As mentioned previously, we are very conscious of providing these youth with a constructive outlet, but its not only about getting the creative juices flowing. The relevance of the work we do here at the PPCAC could not have been more clear in this past week alone when in all reality, it would be false to paint a picture that is all sunshine and bluest of clear skies. I reckon just a glimpse of daily South African News broadcasts is a testament to this. Of late, It is dire. It instills no sense of advancement particularly towards the plight of women; and well it renders even the most gifted of “opinion expressioners” such as myself SPEECHLESS….. indeed perhaps this ‘small nyana’ (across the board Kasi/township slang which really means “Small Little”) link will express the figures which will in turn conjure up the thoughts which really, I struggle to put into words… that speechless/gobsmacked effect..
And this is just the tip of the iceberg. Crazy right?? .. Yes indeed I thought so too.
In the attempt to hurry along our recovery; beyond this thought: "the media can be an instrument of change: it can maintain the status quo and reflect the views of the society or it can, hopefully, awaken people and change minds. I think it depends on who’s piloting the plane.” Katie Couric - allow me to point out that despite all that chaos and mayhem entrenched within the realities most South Africans live, there are glimmers of hope that reside in the youth of this country. Small pockets carefully hidden away - I suppose due to remote location - that if you blinked you would miss it. Cultivated in school through the auspices of Math, Science and Language skills there is also something to be said of the awakening of their creative sides; of the stories told through their writing, their thoughtfulness, their bodies - the way in which one carries themselves alone tells a story - and their means of expression when allowed the safe space and tools to do this.
Over this past week I look at these young ones and I cannot help but feel a sense of joy… Physically, I ache.. every muscle in my body is (as is said in the dance world) ‘talking to me’ and talk - well more like scream - as it might that is a small result of striving and thriving I suppose.
Big, Small, Short, Tall - I’m reminded of my own dance mentor; Alfred Hinkel who insisted: “If you can walk, you can dance” - and this here thought I see could not be more true. Now of course at that point, fancying myself as somewhat of the ‘analyst’ I always thought ‘hmmmm maybe so Alfie, but what of those who are slightly disabled? Surely in one way or another they too can dance? Case in point: Remix Dance Theatre! BOOM!! … now of course I did not dare say this out loud but I did think it.” Okay seriously though, I understood what he was saying and In fact this is one philosophy I consistently instill in these youth - and unlike Alfred - it is in these moments that I personally could not be more thrilled that I’m not exactly befitting of the so called atypical body type of a ballerina. Funny, it is this very fact that seems to resonate most with the kids here. The notion of “Aus’Teboho is not exactly skin and bones, and she’s probably twice my age…so… I can do that too!!” Ha! Yes and it is in that moment when I say “right.. lets go! Hand Stands and Barrel Jumps! 5, 6, 7, 8…. HAMBA WENA!!!” - And so we play, we laugh, we create, and yes of course never forgetting the incorporating of new dance styles found at every local South African club… I believe just this week we played around with one famously named “Sushi”.. fancy that… … and now we await the Fashion Sandwich!
Oh and did I mention that Itumeleng has the MOST AMAZING FEET?! DANCERS FEET!! ….And do not even get me started on the FLEXIBILITY of Dikeledi!! INCREDIBLE!!! - stories for other days… STAY TUNED!!
Fancy Fitness Flavour - TRUST: TEBOHO’S WEEKLY UPDATE:
Fancy Fitness Flavour - TRUST
Classes at the DN Piet Patsa Arts Centre this week were all about TRUST!
Many of the youth Dramatic Need works with face rejection in their daily lives… be it in school or at home there is always an element of feeling unwanted, unworthy and unloved. In turn this plays a significant role in manifesting feeling of self-loathing and self-doubt in these young people as well as a lack of trust - both of themselves and others. In an attempt to affect change in my small way I decided to incorporate the use of a prop in my class. This is advanced for these youngsters and would probably not be ideal to introduce this method so early on. That said, my time with them thus far allowed me to know that, though they may not have been completely ready, they were certainly up for the challenge.
What you see here is my working of concepts around body alignment combined with a chair activity that forces the young people to trust themselves; to trust their sense of awareness. Knowing that engaging with this chair will not result in a disastrous and rather painful fall on what what should be an otherwise cushy glutus maximus (for some more padded than others) … The challenge was around learning to trust oneself first and in this way you will be in a position to trust others (with the greatest of discernment of course.)