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Imagining Ourselves Into Existence.

Programme

D E A R

R E A D E R

It gives us great pleasure to bring you the inaugural Abantu


Book Festival. We can hardly believe that this dream, longheld by writers and readers alike, is finally coming true.
Through the lens of literature and the arts, the festival
creates a platform to celebrate Our Stories, and amplify
brave voices that grapple with social phenomenathis being
the end of 2016, the year of rebellion and hard questions,
marking with certainty the end of an era, theres no shortage
of said social phenomena to grapple with.

The peoples bookseller, African Flavour Books, which


specialises in African Literature, has all your favourite
titles on sale at both venues throughout the festival. It
is our wish that when the festival ends, the bookseller
has no books to take backtheyll all have been
adopted by readers.

This first edition is ably curated by Panashe Chigumadzi, author


of Sweet Medicine, a Fallist as well as a vociferous campaigner for
a Global Black Literary Network.

We hope to create a festival that truly speaks to our


pan-Africanist ideals wherein we have more writers from
the continent represented, not just within Anglophone
Africa, but to include Francophone and Lusophone
Africans. The black experience is global, so we need to be
hosts to Black British, Afro-Caribbean, Afro-Latino and
African-American writers.

Were hosting over 50 superbly accomplished poets, novelists,


essayists, playwrights, literary scholars, screenwriters,
performing artists, and childrens writers from Soweto, South
Africa, Africa and the diaspora. The line-up is a kaleidoscope
of contemporary African literature, illustrating a sense of
continuity in our narrative.

Even as we use the languages of our (former) colonial


masters to reach each other across regions, we must work
to ensure indigenous languages are prominently featured.
We also need to have a greater contingency of young
writers. Were learning that many of our writers are selfpublished, so we will work to include more of them.

The traveling writers arrive on the 6-7 December 2016. In these


two days the authors will visit schools and cultural centres in and
around Soweto, as well take part in the media launch.

We invite you to peruse the schedule of events, take note of


where you need to be, at what time. Some of the events will
be running concurrently, so youre bound to have several
dilemmas to solve.

From 810 December 2016, the Abantu Book Festival


programme spans 32 unmissable panel discussions,
in-conversations, hands-on masterclasses, poetry slams and
film screenings, many of which are free.

Welcome to Abantu Book Festival. We wish you a fine


week of bibliotherapy.
My best regards,

The day events are held at the Eyethu Lifestyle Centre in


Mofolo, 09:30-16:00, and the evening sessions at the
Soweto Theatre at 18:00-21:30.

Thando Mgqolozana
Festival Director

Fred
Khumalo
Angela Makholwa
Gcina Mhlophe
Barbara Boswell
Hawa Jande Golakai
Bheki Peterson James Murua
Bongani Madondo Khadija Patel
Bontle Senne Khaya Dlanga
Chika Unigwe
Khosi Xaba
Dikeledi Deekay Sibanda
Koleka Putuma
Lebo Mashile
Dikgang Moseneke
Lesego Rampolokeng
Duduzile Zamantungwa Mabaso
Don Mattera Lidudumalingani Mqombothi
Elinor Sisulu
Lindokuhle Nkosi
Mak Manaka
Eusebius McKaiser
Florence Masebe Malaika Wa Azania

Mbali Matandela Sihle Khumalo


Mongane Wally Serote
Simamkele
Dlakavu
Natalia Molebatsi
Siphiwe Mpye
Ndumiso Ngcobo
Siphiwo Mahala
Niq Mhlongo
Thabiso Mahlape
NoViolet Bulawayo
Nozizwe Jele
Thandiswa Mazwai
Pamela Maseko
Thato Magano
Percy Mabandu
Unathi Kondile
Phillippa Yaa De Villiers Unathi Magubeni
Pumla Dineo Gqola
Vangi Gantsho
Redi Tlhabi Xolisa Guzula
Rehana Rossouw
Yewande Omotoso
Sabata-mpho Mokae
Zukiswa Wanner
Sandy Ndelu

T H U R S D A Y,

8 T H

D E C

Time

Event

10:00-11:30

Topic: Land and Liberation


Featuring: Dikgang Moseneke
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

12:00-13:30

Topic: Writing and Rioting Black Womxn in the time of Fallism


Featuring: Dikeledi Deekay Sibanda, Mbali Matandela, Sandy Ndelu & Simamkele Dlakavu
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Film: Sbonelo
Writer: Mthokozisi Lembete
Director: Ntombizodwa Magagula
Synopsis: Sbonelo and Thabo, two young men sharing a passion for soccer are happy in the knowledge
that their closeted love affair is their secret to bear until Sbonelos mother decides its time to find him a
girlfriend and her, a future daughter-in-law.
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

14:00-15:30

Host: Eusebius McKaiser & Pumla Dineo Gqola


Featuring: Eusebius McKaiser and Pumla Dineo Gqola in conversation about writing and
each others journeys.
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

18:00

Host: Lebo Mashile


Opening & Welcoming
Poetry Performance: Koleka Putuma
Keynote Address: Gcina Mhlophe
Closing Remarks
Venue: Soweto Theatre
R20.00

F R I D A Y ,

9 T H

D E C

Time

Event

09:30-10:45

Film: Street Somashishini


Writer: Siphamandla Ngcobo
Director: Mapula Sibanda
Synopsis: Zodwa, a single mother and street vendor, struggles to pay her sons university fees as she battles
corrupt police officers and loan sharks.
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Zukiswa Wanner
Topic: Zanendaba
Featuring : Bontle Senne, Gcina Mhlope & Xolisa Guzula
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Topic: The Writing Masterclass
Instructors: Angela Makholwa & Phillippa Yaa de Villiers
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

11:00-12: 45

Film: The Rowing Club


Writer/Director: Vivek Mehta
Synopsis: Kishen, a university student of Indian descent, is forced to deal with the consequences of his
unconscious racial prejudices when a boozed-up night out takes a turn for the worst.
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Lindokuhle Nkosi
Topic: Writing Today
Featuring: Lidudumalingani Mqombothi, Malaika Wa Azania & Unathi Magubeni
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Natalia Molebatsi
Topic: The Poetic Ethic (I)
Performers: Koleka Putuma, Lesego Rampolokeng, Natalia Molebatsi
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

13:00-14:15

Film: The Bicycle Man


Writer/Director: Ntombozuko Twiggy Matiwana
Synopsis: Steven Grootboom, a passionate gardener, loving husband and enabling parent is forced to
reassess his life and relationships when he is diagnosed with cancer.
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Nozizwe Jele
Topic: Cut! Our Stories on Stage and Screen
Featuring: Bheki Peterson, Duduzile Zamantungwa Mabaso, Florence Masebe
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Fred Khumalo
Topic: Some of My Best Friends
Featuring: Angela Makholwa, Ndumiso Ngcobo, Sihle Khumalo, Siphiwo Mahala & Zukiswa Wanner
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

14:30-15:45

Host: NoViolet Bulawayo


Topic: Ghetto is Our First Love
Featuring: Fred Khumalo; Niq Mhlongo; Thandiswa Mazwai
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Pumla Dineo Gqola
Topic: The Quiet Violence of the Nation
Featuring : Eusebius McKaiser, Khosi Xaba, Thato Magano
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

18:00 -18:20

Host: Lebo Mashile


Musical Performance: Zuko Collective
Venue: Soweto Theatre

18:30-20:00

Host: Lebo Mashile


Topic: Women of Letters: Ellen Kuzwayo, Lauretta Ncgobo, Noni Jabavu, Miriam Tlali & Phyllis Ntantala
Featuring : Barbara Boswell, Khosi Xaba, Nokuthula Mazibuko & Pumla Dineo Gqola
Venue: Soweto Theatre
R20.00

20:15-21:30

Host: Redi Tlhabi


Topic: The Days of Our Lives
Featuring : Khaya Dlanga & Malaika Wa Azania
Venue: Soweto Theatre
R20.00

S A T U R D A Y ,

1 0

T H

D E C

Time

Event

09:30-10:45

Film: Leaving Our Mark


Writer/Director: Ntuthuko Z. Qwabe
Synopsis: Mark, a young graffiti artist is forced to choose between his passion for street art and his
controlling policeman fathers dream for him.
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Florence Masebe
Topic: Lost in Translation
Featuring: Pam Maseko, Sabatha-mpho Mokae, Siphiwo Mahala, Unathi Kondile
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Topic: The Publishing Workshop
Instructors: Duduzile Zamantungwa Mabaso & Thabiso Mahlape
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

11:00-12: 45

Film: Let Me Be
Writer/Director: Davashni Rajoo
Synopsis: Rekha Ramnath, a young school girl in conflict with some of the values of her over protective
parents embarks on a journey to discover who she is and find a sense of belonging wherever that may be.
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Redi Tlhabi
Topic: Creating Platforms for Our Stories
Featuring: James Murua, Khadija Patel, Siphiwe Mpye & Thabiso Mahlape
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Zukiswa Wanner
Topic: One Day Well Write About These Places
Featuring: Hawa Jande Golakai, Rehana Rossouw & Yewande Omotoso
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

13:00-14:15

Film: The Things We Harbour


Writer/Director: NomAy Matola
Synopsis: Two brothers, estranged for many years are forced to confront a traumatic past when they
reconnect to arrange their mothers funeral.
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Bongani Madondo
Topic: Kind of Blue: Jazz Beyond its Musical Form
Featuring: Percy Mabandu, Thandiswa Mazwai, & Lindelwa Dalamba
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Natalia Molebatsi
Topic: The Poetic Ethic (II)
Performers: Lebo Mashile, Mak Manaka & Vangi Gantsho
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

14:30-15:45

Host: Chika Unigwe


Topic: Writing Stories Across and Within Genres
Featuring: Koleka Putuma, Lidudumalingani Mqombothi, Bongani Madondo & Rehana Rossouw
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre
Host: Elinor Sisulu
Topic: Literary Legends - Our Journeys
Featuring: Don Mattera & Mongane Wally Serote
Venue: Eyethu Lifestyle Centre

18:00 -20:00

Host: Natalia Molebatsi


Musical Performance
Topic: Women of Letters: Ellen Kuzwayo, Lauretta Ngcobo, Noni Jabavu, Miriam Tlali & Phyllis Ntantala
Featuring: Barbara Boswell, Khosi Xaba, Pumla Dineo Gqola
Venue: Soweto Theatre
R20.00
Topic: Native Life in 2016
Featuring : Panashe Chigumadzi, Unathi Kondile
R20.00

20:15-21:30

Host: Ndumiso Ngcobo


Topic: Literary Crossroads
Featuring : NoViolet Bulawayo & Chika Unigwe
Venue: Soweto Theatre
R20.00

A B O U T

T H E

L O G O

The de-commissioned Orlando cooling towers are Sowetos most


prominent landmark.
The woman with a baby on her back is a variation of Faith47s
street art on Darling Street, District Six, where families were
forcibly removed in the 1960s.
The rest is magical realism.

Abantu Book Festival would not be possible without the help of our sponsors and partners.
We would like to thank the following organisations for their support:

Contact info:
Email: molweni@abantubookfestival.co.za
Website: www.abantubookfestival.co.za
Facebook: @AbantuBookFestival
Twitter: @abantu_
Instagram: @abantubookfest_

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