> Mamela Nyamza and Faniswa Yisa

Award-winning dancer, choreographer, dance teacher and development activist, Mamela Nyamza trained as a dancer at the Zama Dance School and later at the Tshwane University of Technology, receiving a National Diploma in Ballet. She joined the State Theatre Dance Company and received a scholarship to further her studies at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Centre. A highly acclaimed and provocative choreographer, often addressing human rights, her work has been performed internationally to critical acclaim. She was named in the Mail and Guardian’s prestigious Book of South African Women and Oprah Winfrey’s O Magazine, and has taught at Magnet Theatre, Zama Dance School and the UCT School of Dance. Nyamza is a Standard Bank Young Artist (Dance 2011), and Donald Gordon Creative Arts Fellow (2012).


Faniswa Yisa joined The Mothertongue Project from 2001-2004 and co-created and performed in Beading My Soul, Uhambo and The space of dreams with The Mothertongue Project. Her stage credits include Madiba Magic, The Vagina Monologues, The Suitcase, Madeia, Orfeus, Every year everyday I am walking, and Ingcwaba lendoda lisecan’kwendlela, Inxeba lomphilisi which she she co-directed with Mandla Mbothwe. She has performed in numerous countries and was awarded a Best Actress award at AardkLop in 2009.Yisa directed Cantico, which was choreographed and performed by Jazzart in 2011, and was one of the directors in a Remix collaboration with a UK ensemble, Boundless, in the same year. Her most recent performances include Neo Muyanga’s The Flower of Shembe and international touring performances Third World Bunfight.




Mamela Nyamza and Faniswa Yisa
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