KKNK word fees wat wil versoen

Deur Liesel le Roux

Deur Liesel le Roux

‘There’s magic happening beneath the surface of the festival’

Ná elke KKNK word interessante gesprekke op en om Oudtshoorn gevoer oor die “sukses” van daardie jaar se fees. Talle mense meet “sukses” aan hoeveel mense die fees besoek het, maar as ons dieper dink, gaan die sukses van die KKNK oor baie meer as die getal mense.

Dit gaan tog ook oor die invloed van ’n fees – van dinge soos die vreug­de wat dit aan mense verskaf en die geld wat dit in die inwoners se sakke plaas.

Maar ons as inwoners van die Klein Karoo moet besef dat die invloed van Suid-Afrika se grootste Afrikaanse fees baie verder strek as net Oudtshoorn.

Vanjaar se KKNK is oor die algemeen deur inwoners en besoekers as baie positief ervaar.

Mense verwys daarna as ’n fees wat gemeenskappe en kultuurgroepe versoen; Hugo Theart, waarnemende uitvoerende hoof van Kunste Onbe­perk, glo dat die kunste, net soos sport, helend kan wees.

En almal wat in die Suid-Afrika van 2018 leef, weet dat ons land en sy inwoners sulke “genesing” baie nodig het.
Een van die insette oor die fees was ’n Facebook-pos van Ishmael Mahomed, uitvoerende hoof van die Markteater in Johannesburg. Hy is ook ’n voormalige artistieke direkteur van die Nasionale Kunstefees in Grahamstad en ’n direksielid van die KKNK.

Mahomed is baie positief oor die toekoms van die fees en die wyse waarop dit reeds slaag om deur middel van die kunste gemeenskappe te betrek, te verenig en te genees. Hy gebruik die woord “deernis” om dit wat by die KKNK gebeur, te beskryf.

Hy skryf onder meer: “At the open stage in front of the CP Nel Museum, any ostrich taking its head out of the sand would be surprised to see how fully integrated the audiences had become. Music was the magnet that was holding them together. In the Netwerk 24 venue which housed some difficult but essential conversations about the state of the nation, there was a shared passion for a South Africa that must be a home to all its people.

“It was in the unscripted texts at the festival that a new meaning was emerging. Deernis (empathy) … ‘om vir die ander te kan voel en verstaan’ was a word that resonated almost every day at the KKNK in either official speeches, talks at the Netwerk 24 venue, in conversations with artists and in the themes of various productions. If deernis is the unannounced subtext of this year’s festival; and one which is just emerging organically, then it gives us hope that the arts continue to be a dynamic platform for healing.

There’s magic happening beneath the surface of the festival.

“The festival is more than just a weeklong event for cultural migrants coming to the town for the annual jol. The festival’s past is worthy of reflection. It reminds us just how far we’ve come. Its future is full of promise and hope. And beyond this year’s festival that hope will continue to linger and inspire its town’s folks because when all the artists, traders and festinoes have left there’ll be five permanent public artworks funded by ABSA that will remain in the town.

“Next year during the festival, ABSA intends to install five more permanent public artworks. Each of these artworks – accessible as they are – will be dynamic monuments about how the arts can bury dinosaurs and let new birds fly with freedom.”

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