Afrique mon désir (Africa my longing / Afrika my verlange) is a 75 minute multi-media world music production, directed by David Kramer, featuring the multi-award winning South African singer and composer Laurinda Hofmeyr, bassist and musical producer Schalk Joubert and the Afrique mon désire ensemble, presented by the Cape Town Music Academy (CTMA).
Laurinda Hofmeyr was approached by CTMA CEO Nico McLachlan in 2016 to consider setting French poetry to music for the Afrique Mon Désir project. Hofmeyr says: “This idea was a huge challenge for me. I have not busied myself with any French since my Varsity days. But taking this chance was extremely rewarding. I discovered incredible poetry and met wonderful people and musicians. Afrique mon désir brought together different themes in my life. It feels as if everything somehow worked together for all of this to happen.”
Together with a world class ensemble of West African singers and musicians currently living in Cape Town, Hofmeyr explores a wealth of African poetry from francophone countries Madagascar, Mauritania, Ivory Coast, Tshad, Cameroon and all the way back to South African shores with the Afrikaans poetry of Breyten Breytenbach, Antjie Krog en Eugène Marais. This literary feast is combined with African inspired music, to produce an energetic multi-media production titled, Afrique mon désir.
With the help of the Alliance Francaise du Cap’s network, four world class musicians originally from the DRC, now living in Cape Town were found through a series of auditions – vocalists Malako Wekuna-Soba, Yamamoto Bonkuta Loyeke, Dea Kinzungu-Walo and guitarist Kayemba Ilunga. The ensemble also consists of South African drummer Kevin Gibson and accordion player and keyboardist Dylan Roman.
Afrique mon désir explores themes of longing, displacement and a celebrated deep, shared connection between the African continent and its people.
Mesmerising animation films, created by award winning South African artist, Diek Grobler, accompany the music, making this production a unique experience where languages like French, Afrikaans, Lingala and even some Swahili,Tshiluba and Kikongo) flow seamlessly into the universal language of music.
The project is presented and supported by the Cape Town Music Academy (CTMA).
CTMA is a not for profit company (NPC) that seeks to create opportunities for local, established and emerging musicians and related artists in the Western Cape. The objective of the CTMA is to conduct a public benefit activity which creates programmes and projects for the promotion of the work of local musicians, and the development of career opportunities in the South African music industry. Vicky Davis, CTMA programme manager says: “There seems to be substantial support for classical music in South Africa, but there are not many opportunities for contemporary music. We feel that South Africa is home to incredible contemporary musicians who can hold their own on world-class stages. Our idea is to showcase our local contemporary music talent on the best possible stages and platforms on home ground, as well as looking into international exchange programmes through conversations with promoters abroad. And this is exactly what is currently taking shape with the Afrique Mon Désir project: It will be staged at the Woordfees, Stellenbosch in March and at KKNK, Oudtshoorn in April and Afrique mon désir will then also be presented in France, the Netherlands and Belgium in June this year.”
Please view videos of the Afrique mon désir band here / Merci de consulter les liens du groupe Afrique mon Désir ici:
- “Die Dans van die Rëen” – Laurinda Hofmeyr, Afrique mon Désir Ensemble & Regis Gizavo: https://com/223849562
- “Sous la Terre” – Laurinda Hofmeyr, Afrique mon Désir Ensemble & Regis Gizavo
Live performance video:
Afrique mon désir LIVE @ Prince Albert Lees Festival 2017:
Afrique mon désir.
Laurinda Hofmeyr and the Afrique mon désir Ensemble.
Directed by David Kramer.
Animation by Diek Grobler.
Laurinda Hofmeyr, Schalk Joubert, Kevin Gibson, Malako Wekuna Soba, Yamamoto Bonkuta Loyeke, Kayembe Ilunga, Deodata (Dea) Kingzunga-Walo, Dylan Roman.
Stellenbosch Woordfees: Wednesday 7 March 20h30 /Sunday 11 March 16h00