Wednesday, 10 June 2009



INFECTING THE CITY (the Spier Performing Arts Festival) is a theme-orientated festival that presents free site-specific and public performance works in inner city Cape Town, South Africa.

Entering its 3rd year in this form, the dates for ITC 2010 are Saturday 13 Feb to Saturday 20 Feb.

In 2009 ITC carried the theme ‘Home Affairs’ in response to the xenophobia that grips South Africa. For more information on the 2009 festival see our website:

The theme for Infecting the City 2010 is “HUMAN RITES”
Here in South Africa – and in many countries in the region – we straddle an angry moment characterized by festering feelings and inflamed issues: betrayal, violence, hatred, powerlessness, inequality, greed, corruption, poverty, intolerance and desperation. Many African countries are grappling with the issue of social healing.

In all its various forms, ritual has been used for millennia, across the world, to restore social rupture. Some schools of thought have it that the roots of theatre lie in ritual. Is there a place for ritual in our society? How can the arts today make use of ritual to effect social transformation? What are the wounds that need attention in our society? Can we make performance art works that are themselves rituals for the healing of these wounds? What shape can rituals take in the communal spaces of the 21st Century Global Village?
With the theme ‘HUMAN RITES, ITC will address these questions in 2010.

ITC is now calling for submissions for the following components:

1.New Collaborative Works

2.Commissioned Works

This project brings artists together in Cape Town from different parts of the world and from a wide range of disciplines. I am looking for artists who are established, outstanding, cutting-edge performance makers/conceptual artists/designers/ritual practitioners with strong interests in both collaboration and in outdoor site-specific work. I am particularly, though not exclusively, interested in artists with a ‘non-western’ orientation, and those from African countries. Artists need to be fluent in English.

This challenging and rewarding residency project is divided into two phases:

1.During November 2009 nine selected artists will attend an intensive two week course relating to and unpacking the ITC theme. The course will be delivered and facilitated by local and international academics, practitioners and thinkers related to the ‘Human Rites’ theme. At the beginning of week 3 the artists will be divided into teams of three collaborators each: one from South Africa, one from another African state, and one from overseas. They will be allocated a budget, a title for their site-specific work and a production manager, and then have a week in which to plan, strategize and audition performers and other artists. Thereafter they will go their separate ways, maintaining dialogue with one another, with the course-coordinator and with the dramaturge via e-mail.

2.For 5 weeks from mid-January the three teams will resume their residency in Cape Town where each team will be allocated a studio. The teams have 4 weeks to produce and rehearse their works before ITC 2010 opens on 13 February. Productions will be performed daily until 20 February.

In 2009 ITC hosted 12 artists from South Africa, Africa and Europe. Have a look at the video of their experience on the ITC website (top right hand corner on the homepage).

If this project appeals to you please email with a motivation for your participation, a comprehensive C.V., and a clear photograph of yourself by the end of June.

We are also calling for proposals for new performance works relating to the ‘Human Rites’ theme. These works will be performed in public spaces, free to the public. We are not looking for ‘plays’. Performance art pieces, performance installations etc. made by interesting collaborative teams will attract our interest.

If this project appeals to you please email a detailed proposal outlining the form and the content of the piece, the creative team, the type of venue and probable performers. C.V.s and clear photographs of the creative team should be included. Submissions should reach us by the end of June.

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