Facilitator, choreographer, dancer, director and art producer, Adriana graduated in Performing Arts at the University of Santa Catarina, Brazil, where she had focused on exploring notions of gender and psyche. Working with groups of women around issues such as sexuality, taboos and traumas, she chose dance and movement theories such as Laban, 5 Rhythms and Viewpoint as forms of expression to interact with local communities in Florianópolis. The outcome of her project was a multidisciplinary performance presented in 2011 called “Body of Woman – nice to meet you” created by 18 women using poetry, images, films and music that represented their thoughts around gender.
After two years of travelling around the world seeking for anthropological experiences with dance and movement, she settled in SA studying a Master’s degree in Applied Drama at DFL. Adriana aims to investigate gender focusing on the agency of young women living in the CBD of Johannesburg, and thus foment debates about the educative aspects of sexual identity formation, and the creative possibilities of art and activism to deal with gender questions including performance and sexual health in urban spaces.
Gcebile Dlamini theatre director, writer and actress, was born in the mountainous Valleys of Swaziland. As a young girl, she was exposed to dance and music.
Motivated enough, she wanted to become an actress and pursued her acting calling at the Durban University of Technology from 2008 to 2010. achieving her Diploma in Drama, she continued her studies at the Tshwane University of Technology for her B-Tech. During her studies she was drawn to directing and community theatre.
Notable productions include: I still ask myself why?, Dzeliwe (2012) and Nomzamo (2013). Some Awards include Special Mention - 5th best production for the Innercity Drama Schools Festival, Best Director - EADS Festival 2012, 2013 Second Best Production, Best Director - SANCTA Festival and numerous nominations.
Her collaborations include Forgotten Angle Collaborative Theatre and Soul City. Her work experience involves the Hillbrow Theatre as a Facilitator and Schools festival coordinator. She currently studies at Drama for Life at the University of Witwatersrand for her Honours in Applied Theatre.
Lehlohonolo Dube from Kwa-Thema started performing with Zwakala Dramatic Oracle, where he was groomed and performed in various productions. In 2005 he joined Sibikwa Arts Centre and successfully completed NQF Level 4 Learnership in Performing Arts. After his graduation he performed in several Sibikwa productions and was subsequently asked to join the Sibikwa Arts Dance Company in 2008. In 2011 he directed his energy and focus on teaching Applied Theatre. He then took part in an international collaboration with Royal Central School of Speech & Drama in London (UK).
He coordinated the Sibikwa Saturday Arts Academy Project for 4 years and also led the Artists In Schools Programme which is initiated by the Department of Arts & Culture. He is currently doing his Advanced Diploma in Applied Theatre with Drama For Life at the University of the Witwatersrand
Linda Gabriel, born in 1985 in Zimbabwe, is a highly creative and dynamic arts specialist, multi-talented person who is not afraid to think out of the box. She sets high standards in the development arts in Africa and implementing new ideas. She maintains an open-minded attitude towards new ideas and is able to integrate knowledge with broader strategic, influential and operational objectives. Linda is one of the crop of exciting female performance poets to emerge out of Zimbabwe. Bilingual, her linguistic versatility is forged into brilliant poems written in either English or Shona, depending on which language effectively expresses what issue. She started performing poetry in high school and has since participated in major literary events in Zimbabwe, the rest of southern Africa and Europe. Currently she works with Goethe Institut and African Synergy Trust.
Modisana Mabale is a poet, actor, creative writer who hails from Sharpeville, a township in Gauteng.He is an activist and has performed in political rallies and prisons. He believes that art should heal the wounded and it should wound those who violate the rights of the voiceless. He conducted poetry workshops and acted in / directed theatre productions. He started his artistic life at Sharpeville Resource Centre under guidance of Gamakhulu Diniso, and was introduced to Theatre basics by Mpho Molikeng and Nduka Mntambo. He started writing plays and staged his first one man show Zungu the Zulu, in 1998. The love for art developed as theatre was the only language he could speak. In 2005 Modisana formed Power Poetry & Theatre Co, a non-profit organisation in Sharpeville, through Power Poetry & Theatre Co. They organised Poetry Sessions and short plays in the community He studied drama at Tshwane University of Technology and holds a certificate in Performing Arts from Movie Tech Film & Television College. He has written a Spoken Word-Theatre piece Welcome to the Womb produced by Windybrow Theatre, under the mentorship of Kgafela oa Magogodi, Don Mattera, Lefifi Tladi and Lesego Rampolokeng as part of Writers on Stage Festival. Modisana conducted poetry workshops for the Qhakaza Sedibeng Poetry Programme and Adjudicated Poetry Programme For Gauteng Department of Sports, Recreation Arts & Culture’s Ishashalazi Programme in 2013. He worked as a director for Viva Valia, a drama club at Vaal University of Technology (2008) and directed Honey B.E.E.
He participated at the Mvuso Schools Project (Drama for Life initiative), he enjoys reading, performance art, mime and movement techniques and exploring alternative spaces for theatre. He is a volunteer at Cancer Association Of South Africa (CANSA).
His poetry performances include South African Literary Awards (2011), Emfuleni mayoral inauguration (2005) and also represented Gauteng Province at The Macufe Festival in 2011 and he released his poetry album Thokolosi ya Ditoro in 2013. Some of his poems have been featured in Peo Tsa Rona/I Nostri Semi Poetry Anthology (2007), edited and translated by Raphael d'Abdon in Italy 2007.His theatre credits include The Physicist, In Our Blood, The King and I, Shoeville and Pula. He appeared on Debonairs Pizza TV ad in 2011 & 2013
He is currently doing his honours degree in Applied Drama.
'Sessy' Susie Maluleke is a multidisciplinary artist, a social activist, specifically interested in arts and culture, art education and art activism. She holds a BA (Hons) degree in Performing and Visual Arts from Wits and majored in Drama and Film, Arts Business Marketing and Management, Applied Drama and Anthropology. Her main interest lies in using art as a tool for social change. Her passion is creating and making arts activities accessible to everyone especially in disadvantaged communities. With her MA degree, she wishes to create awareness that art is indeed a very beautiful field and people can choose it as a career choice. Inkomu.
Linda was born and raised in the Eastern Cape in the small town of East London. She started her schooling at the age of four at one of the only all girls schools in East London. Moving from Clarendon Preparatory, Clarendon Primary and finally completing her matric at Clarendon High School. She fell in love with music and dance from the age of four where she attended ballet classes and played in the various school bands. Her love and passion for ballet carried on all the way into University where she is now a fourth year Physical Theatre student at the University of the Witwatersrand.
Music, her second love continues to influence her drama performances and is one of her favourite hobbies. She continues to sing and play the saxophone in her spare time. Linda moved to Johannesburg in 2010 where she qualified to do a degree in dramatic arts at the University of the Witwatersrand. This has given her the opportunity to work with various directors such as Greg Homann,Warren Nebe, Dominique Gumede, Mwenya Kabwe etc. and choreographers such as Bailey Snyman, Sonia Radebe,Alfred Kunutsor etc. Working with such experienced people in their fields has allowed Linda to gain a large deal of experience and focus. Even though Linda is a dedicated student she still manages to get involved in all the drama activities that come her way.
She has been a scholar of Drama for Life since 2011. This year Linda has taken on two Drama for Life majors, Applied Drama and Theatre and Dramatheraphy. Together with Physical Theatre, her third major, these two subjects form powerful tools which Linda aims to use to one day work with young children as one of South Africa's top. Drama Therapists.
Leané graduated as a communication practitioner from the North-West University in 2011 while at the same time graduating from the South African Speech and Drama College with a licentiate of speech and drama teaching.
After receiving a Media24 young talent bursary she completed her honours in journalism at Stellenbosch University before starting work at Beeld, the biggest Afrikaans daily newspaper in South Africa, in 2013. Working as a journalist in rural communities and with traumatised children helped her realise that she wanted to find ways to heal broken individuals and communities. A published author and poet, she loves writing, but her passion is finding ways to use drama in therapeutic ways to better society. The words of the Islamic writer, Khalil Gibran, are what finally convinced Leané to leave journalism behind and pursue a drama therapy honours at Drama for Life. “God rests in reason and moves in passion, and because you are part of God you too must rest in reason and move in passion.”
Sandile was born in Durban Kwamashu and matriculated at Nqabakazulu Technical Comprehensive High School.
Being a natural born talented and passionate youngster, he began his acting at a young age and joined the community project specializing in acting, dance and was involved in community development programmes such as Peace Initiative Programme aimed at rehabilitating the youth who were victimised by violence and Aids awereness programmes adressing the issue through artistic engagements.
His talent began taking shape when he auditioned for the main stream theatre production The Zulu by Mbongeni Ngema and more productions which saw him travelling to countries such as Germany, Switzerland, England, Sweden and Denmark
Through the word of mouth Sandile found out about Drama for Life and saw an opporturnity to enroll and to capacitate his knowledge of working closer to the communities as part of his long lived dream.
Lereko Mfono, sometimes affectionately known as ‘Rex’, is a young writer, theatre-maker, facilitator, student and storyteller hailing from the humble Vereeniging.
Lereko completed his matric at the National School of the Arts and considers that one of the best decisions he made for himself. He has since undergone an exciting venture into the theatre and applied drama world, traveling to most South African provinces, Zimbabwe and France, and in the process falling in love with the different cultures and personalities that come with the work.
Above all that consumes his thought spaces - desire to get back into sports, adapting to Wits, family, friends, dreams - he treasures his relationship with God the most.
Themba Mkhoma is a writer/director specialising in youth development. He is a Fieldworker for the Market Theatre and a founding member of The Living Newspaper, a movement that uses Drama as a tool for youth development.
Themba has won a number of awards including the Anglo Platinum Best Youth Writer in 2005.
Themba co-created Siyakholwa, an SABC 1 children’s show. He’s one of the writers of Zone 14 Season 2, an SABC 1 TV Drama Series.
His screen directing includes "Ä Gift for Christmas", a feature film produced by MNET and "Mirage of Life", a TV Series for Africa Magic.
Majesty Mnyandu is a 29 year old human development practitioner from KwaZulu Natal, with an exceptional natural gift in communications. His home is at Umgababa, an area under the Ethekwini Municipality. Majesty began his education in KZN and later moved to Johannesburg where he completed his high school and furthered his studies.
Majesty obtained a diploma in media studies from Damelin and later attained a higher diploma in Community Leadership from Rhema Bible College.
Majesty continued to work with various human development organizations around Johannesburg covering development areas like street children rehabilitation programmes and anti-xenophobia campaigns.
In 2007 he was involved in the production of a TV documentary for SABC 1. In this production Majesty featured as an associated producer and presenter. He also worked as an assistant producer in the documentaries UMOJA and Realities Beyond Fame.
In 2012 Majesty successfully completed his advanced diploma in Dramatic Arts from the University of Witwatersrand and is currently an Honours students whose research focus is the redundancy of elderly and veteran artist.
Galeboe or Gale as most people prefer to call her, received her formal education in Drama at Technikon Pretoria, completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Technology-Drama in 1999 and became directly involved in the Performing Arts Industry.
In 2006 she got a scholarship from Ford Foundation and attended an internship program in 2007 at The Center for Theatre of the Oppressed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Gale is a Drama lecturer at Tshwane University of Technology since 2005. She also works with the South African State Theatre’s Development department
at community engagement level.
She is currently doing her post grad studies in Drama Therapy at Wits’ Drama For Life. Her heart’s desire is to use the knowledge she would have acquired to better the lives of others, considering the words of John Wesley: “Do all the good you can, in all the ways you can, in all the place you can, at all times you can, to all people you can as long as ever you can.”
Mmabatho is an actor whose skill was honed at the University of the Witwatersrand School of Dramatic Arts. In her acting career which spans almost twenty years, she appeared in numerous highly acclaimed television and stage productions, some of which she was involved through workshops. Mmabatho always avails her time and skill to the new talent in the industry. She is Executive Director at Digital Broadcast Hub, an audio-visual and electronic media production company. She is also a Founding Director of National Broadcast Institute, a non profit digital television and broadcast media training and development program.She has recorded many radio commercials, educational radio projects, public service announcements and radio plays as a voice-over artist. Mmabatho is also a seTswana language script translator. Mmabatho is also a registered Assessor of arts , culture and media qualifications within MICTSETA and she sits on the advisory Panel for Theatre and Musical Theatre of the National Arts Council. She holds a bachelar’s degree in Dramatic Arts and is currently studying towards her Honors in Drama Therapy.
Born and bred in Pretoria, Thoriso is a name of Tswana origin meaning “Praises”. She is currently studying for her honours in Applied Drama and theatre. Her involvement is mostly in theatre for activism, production management, radio, presenting and volunteering. She is a committed scholar at Wits Citizenship and Community Outreach (WCCO), where community outreach does not only provide her with real-world experiences but an opportunity to bring social transformation through volunteering. Apart from being chosen amongst hundreds of applicants to go on a WCCO student exchange programme to volunteer at an English medium school in India, she is the co-founder of HEARTS. HEARTS believes in settling social issues which create an obstacle for the girl and boy child to obtain their right to education. She believes that "You get the best out of others, when you give the best of yourself" Harvey S. Firestone.
Zandile is a confident, innovative young leader and a former Radio personality with zeal to empower girls and young women. She is the Southern Africa Regional Focal Point for the Pan African Youth Leaders Network of the United Nations for the Achievement of the MDGs. Zandi has participated in Advocacy projects such as Through Positive Eyes, the 5th SA AIDS Conference, the Youth Conference on HIV/AIDS in Mali, Bamako and the “Youth We Can” debate in Norway, Oslo and the 3rd World Mayors and African Leaders Summit in Colombia, Cali and the 4th Pan African Youth Leaders Summit, Dakar, Senegal. She has worked as a Facilitator for Soul City Institute, Zakheni Training and Development Centre, Get Down Productions and Themba Interactive. Her vision is to institute an Arts Academy which will be aimed at empowering young girls and women to face their everyday challenges.
Rozanne Myburgh is currently an master's student in drama therapy, a field that she is increasingly passionate about. To pay her rent and keep her tummy full she is working as a freelance digital editor for Vrouekeur magazine overseeing all their web and social media activities. She also works as a graphic designer, web designer, photographer and journalist on a freelance basis. She won a Caxton Magazine award for best designer in 2011. Her background is in the media industry but her passion is drama. Another passion of hers is movement and physical theatre. She has been doing Biodanza for the past 5 years and also does weekly Expressive Movement classes with drama therapist, Sian Palmer. She completed her official studies in Communication and Graphic Design in 2004 but sees herself as a student for life because she believes that no one should ever stop learning.
Zimele Phillip Ndhlovu is a Wits postgraduate with his Adv. Diploma in Applied Drama and Theatre under Drama for Life academic programme, he is a Tembisa based theatre practitioner who has been in the creative industry for the past 17 years as a theatre maker and performer. He toured Southern Africa presenting the diverse breath taking art informed by our rich history and cultures. He crafted raw traditional rituals from the famous war cry “Usuthu!”, songs and dance that journeys through colonization of our continent. Slavery that gave birth to Gumboot dance and “Isifana kalo” language mining camps by miners.
Zimele specialises as a facilitator of his mentioned craft, with the experience of working in correctional centres, schools, various communities urban and rural for social transformation. He integrates the contemporary growth of arts in his work. He is the Artistic Director of Makubenjalo Performing Artists working on Nomadlozi, a theatre production, and he designed specific programmes to address our schools crisis and service delivery protest massacre. He is the chairperson of Tembisa Performing Arts Network, a forum structure, facilitating Tembisa performing arts affairs and he is back at Wits to get his Honours Degree in Diploma in Applied Drama and Theatre.
In 2008 Naadiya Shaik Omar studied at the University of Johannesburg majoring in Psychology and Sociology. It was then that she discovered Drama Therapy and decided that it was an avenue she would like to explore.
In 2009 Naadiya transferred to the University of the Witwatersrand where she attained a Bachelor of Arts in Performing and Visual Arts (BA PVA). During this time she concurrently majored in Psychology and Television Studies. In 2012 she did her Honours in Drama Therapy while working part time as a celebrity PA on the popular soap opera Generations. She currently works at Themba Interactive and is involved with setting up Applied Drama and Theatre interventions at several orphanages in Johannesburg.
The DFl scholar would like to obtain a Master’s degree in Drama Therapy as well as establish her own Applied Theatre programme for the at-risk youth. DFL provides her with the ideal platform to realize her goals and to utilize her exceptional skills in human development to help people.
Yaela Orelowitz graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Johannesburg in 2010. During this time she spent a year at Rhodes University in Grahamstown studying Drama and became a Licentiate of Speech and Drama teaching through Trinity College London. After working as an assistant drama teacher for five years, Yaela opened a private School of Speech, Drama & Oral Communication in Johannesburg. In addition to teaching, Yaela has worked extensively in the field of Public Speaking and educational theatre performance.
Yaela is ecstatic to be joining Drama For Life and studying further in her field of interest: Drama Therapy
Pearl Qhobela is a budding, young academic who is also a lover of Physical Theatre. Her recent physical theatre work was an exploration of the idea of consciousness (awareness) and matter. She has a particular interest in the study of Vedic philosophy and meditation on the Maha Mantra. Her passion for performance and psychology has led her to pursue a career in Dramatherapy research and practice in South Africa.
Tebogo Radebe was born in September 1987 in Alexandra and matriculated from Morris Isaacson high school. He did theatre / creative writing classes at the Soyikwa Institute of African theatre in 2007. In 2008 he did Marketing at the University of South Africa and co-founded Blaq Aesthetics arts organization, 2009 he did marketing in the arts course, monitoring and evaluation, leadership in the arts course facilitated by the Arts and Culture Trust and Wits University. He co-produced a puppetry and stage play “Learn to teach“, which were commissioned by the Read Trust. 2013 he did play writing workshops facilitated by Roy Sargent at the UJ ART CENTRE. In November 2013 he adapted/co-directed / produced the “The Awkward 4", a children’s educational theatre production. He is an Advanced Diploma in Applied Drama student.
A quote by Ernst Fischer taken from the introduction of the film Zeitgeist 1 that recently inspired me.
“In a decaying society, Art, if it’s truthful, must also reflect decay and unless it wants to break faith with its social function, Art must show the world as changeable and actively help to change it...”
Since graduating from WITS, I went to England for 3 years; I worked as a teaching assistant in inner city school. On my return to SA, I enrolled for a PGCE through UNISA. Whilst studying I was employed by a remedial school and worked as a special needs teacher and presented drama and movement lessons to the children as part of their developmental process. In 2011, after completing my studies I started at Michael Mount Waldorf School in Bryanston as a class teacher. I worked as a primary school teacher and took my class through grade 1, 2 and 3 and presented extra-curricular drama lessons. Through my years of teaching and working with children I have been using my drama skills and experience as an educational tool, both in a ‘teaching’ and a developmental capacity. My role as a class teacher and drama coach has been enriching and rewarding experience within its own right, but I am ready again to be a learner of and for life.
I believe the artist’s mission is to make the soul and inner worlds perceptible and the hidden visible. Our scientific, techno - consumerist culture trains us to develop the eyes of outer perception only. Visionary or transformative Art encourages the development of our inner sight to activate social awareness and outer action. I have personal interests in the areas of consciousness, ritual and ceremony, global transformation and environmental sustainability. As a scholar, I would like to interrogate the social function of Performance Art in how it can be powerful tool to potentially address the problems and perceptions related to social inequalities, human rights issues and the global planetary crisis.
Thobeka Nobenguni Sinxo is a BA Honours student, specializing in Applied Drama and Theatre studies. Born and bred in the Eastern Cape, she moved from the Motherwell Township to pursue her career in the Arts in the ‘world class city’ of Africa, Johannesburg. Being the descendent of the classical Xhosa writer, Sir Guybon Sinxo, she believes she is following the right path in her engagement with theatre and literature. She hopes to revive the indigenous written classics in honour of the ancestors. She also wishes to work with her community in facilitating young artists of South Africa towards the direction of seeking more knowledge for their crafts. She believes that true social justice can be achieved through the levelling of availability of opportunities for both the sciences as well as the arts within the bounds of education as knowledge of self.
Student specializing in Applied Theatre studies and Director. Theatre Maker. Story teller. Social media junkie. Community activist. She believes in changing our communities, our nations, our world by empowering one mind at a time.
“The world perishes not from bandits or fires, but from hatred, hostility and all these petty squabbles.” – Anton Chekhov
Thembile Tshuma is an actor, dancer, director, percussionist, musical director and composer, facilitator, choreographer and puppeteer. He has been in the arts industry for the past 10years where he has been well known as the Artistic Snypper. He grew up in Bulawayo, the hub of the arts in Zimbabwe, but now based in Johannesburg, South Africa since 2008. Snypper holds a “trainer of trainers” certificate from The United Nations Children's Fund - UNICEF since 2006. He is passionate about writing and directing and enjoys engaging with people and seeing his work have an impact on them. Thembile has been involved with theatre groups in the SADC Region and is the artistic director of Royal Vibrationz marimba band which is the outstanding marimba group in the region. In 2004, he was a nominee in the Zimbabwe National Arts merit awards.
Matlakala Motaung an actor and a Theatre practitioner, born in Alexandra, attended School in Alexandra and later matriculated in Limpopo in 1988.
She founded Amakhono We sintu, a traditional music and dance group till 2002.
Matlakala was trained as a languge Laboratory assistant teacher by IBM South Africa, which got her placed at Emfundisweni and Gordon Primary. After nine years of teaching experience, Theatre de Talipot in Reunion Island contracted her for three years as music composer and lead role, later Atis productions contracted her to do a Compilation of different Island music. She worked with Njapedi productions as producer of Afro Skitso Sound Music, facilitated and developed shows for Ishashalazi Program and Masakhane Festival, and also orked as an actor on numerous local theatre productions.
Matlakala has a project management in Arts Administration Qualifications and Scriptwriting and Directing Qualifications both at level 5 with Faisit and Gomacc respectively. She has written and directed productions like First Traveler, Home Sweet Home, Wooden Plate, to mention but a few. She has worked with Giant Match Association as a puppeteer, making of puppets, manipulation, story telling and narration.
She is currently studying a Post Graduate with Drama for Life, aiming at sharpening her skills and dealing with Human Rights Issues through Applied Theatre around Gauteng.
Hanna is currently an Honours degree student at wits, looking forward to do her Masters in Drama Therapy, and become an active drama therapist.
she holds a Unisa Psychology Honours degree (2001) as well as a BA degree in Sociology and Anthropology from Tel-Aviv University (1980).
She believes that the South African context should aim at developing the drama therapy profession, and promote its interventions in every South African walk of life;in its communities,organizations,institutions schools, work place and amongst individuals as well.that will promote a healthier more homogeneous and happy rainbow nation.
Albert was born 14 September 1985 and raised in Daveyton East of Johannesburg, completed grade 12 in 2004, then went to Vunani Mfundo Adult Centre where he upgraded his grade 12. He later went to work with Love Life in 2006 to 2007 as a facilitator on life skill and performing arts. He then founded his organisation “Alba creative’s arts performance” which mainly focused on after school programs for the youth and pre-school in 2008. His choreographies at Alba creative’s was taken to the world championship in Los Angeles(USA) and nominated on for the Southern African Association of Youth Clubs (SAAYC) on the arts category where it came on top three.
Albert won the 2009 Total Sibikwa annual storytelling competition judged by Gqina Mhlophe. He started working with Mr. Mac Mathunjwa at springs theatre on a production Nail Him in 2009 then worked with Muvhango as a background actor from 2011 to 2013, he also worked with DFL on the 1913 Land Act Expo in August 2013.
He has directing, writing acting, singing and choreographing skills.