- Human Rights Day offers an opportunity to revel in the last days of summer and what better way of doing so than with a day outdoors and a night in a fancy hotel? Well, if you can stomach the “olde world” charm of the Gold Reef City theme park, then head there on March 21 for a gig by Nkulee Dube, daughter of the much-loved late reggae legend Lucky Dube. The gig is one hour only, from 1pm to 2pm, but there are many other activities in the park. The Gold Reef City Theme Park Hotel accommodation special is for March 21 and 22 and is priced from R999 a couple a night, including breakfast and free theme park entrance.
>>Gold Reef City, Northern Parkway, Ormonde. Booking is essential. Tel: 0112485700. Email: [email protected]. Website: goldreefcity.co.za.
- Melville’s Lucky Bean restaurant serves reliable chow and its casual decor, including couches spilling out on to the sidewalk, provides a relaxing backdrop to an evening of aural stimulation. Do not miss resident Jozi madcap bassist Carlo Mombelli, a revered composer and arranger with a committed cult following. The venue is promising an intimate gig that also stars Siya Makuzeni (vocals), Justin Badenhorst (drums), Sydney Mnisi (saxophone, flute) and Ilke Lea Alexander (flute and piccolo).
>>Lucky Bean, 16 7th Street, Melville, on March 18 at 8.30pm. To book, phone: 0114825572. Entrance is R100 and meals are billed separately. To view the menu, visit: luckybeanrestaurant.co.za.
- Art collector and dealer Warren Siebrits is the envy of many. At the city’s annual art fair, he presented a magnificent selection of work by Walter Battiss and his (now closed) gallery sold important work by black pioneers of South African art. He was also well known for collecting some of the work of enigmatic artist Wopko Jensma. In his publicity material for his current exhibition of Jensma prints — 25 rare works, including 15 linocuts, five etchings, two woodcuts and a painting — Siebrits says that he held his first exhibition of the artist’s work in 1996. Since then, “not a day has gone by that I don’t keep looking for his works”. Jensma, who also published poetry, went missing in 1993. He would have been 73 this year.
>>Warren Siebrits @ MAKER, 142 Jan Smuts Avenue, Parkwood, until the end of April. The gallery is open from Tuesday to Friday. Tel: 0113270000.
- The experimental art duo, the Trinity Session, is made up of two consummate professional artists in their prime: Marcus Neustetter and Stephen Hobbs. Their retrospective, of a decade of art consultancy and development, will hopefully, shed light on the sometimes obscure methods described in their press release as being, “an investigation into social and electronic networks and varied urban terrains”. For one week only a unique venue on the trendy Maboneng Precinct will host an exhibition “made up of light. Video, photography, mind-maps and artefacts from a dense archive of research will be transformed on to large projection surfaces.”
>>Factory building, 281 Commissioner Street, Maboneng Precinct, from March 16 to 25.
- The exhibition Mine requires time to savour. The 19 video art works on display may not be new, but they represent some of the classic work in this field by artists in Johannesburg. According to the publicity statement, the title “refers not only to the idea of deep-level mining but to the idea of personal ownership. The common denominator [is] that the artists make reference to themselves in their work.” The exhibition is curated by Berlin-based curator Abrie Fourie and includes work by Bridget Baker, Dineo Bopape, Dorris Bloom, Jacques Coetzer, William Kentridge, Michael MacGarry, Nandipha Mntambo, Robin Rhode, Penny Siopis and Minette Vari.
>>University of Johannesburg Art Gallery, Kingsway Road, Auckland Park. There is a walk-about on March 17 at 11am. Tel: 0115592099.
- Some overseas performers enjoy the relative innocence of South African audiences and keep returning to entertain where they perceive there is so little going on. Let us face it, Jo’burg can do with a few talented visitors every year and Ceri Dupree is one of them. The drag artiste calls herself “the UK’s leading female impersonator”. We will never know if that is true, but what the hell. The show, The Ladies I Love, includes convincing vocal impressions, performed in extravagant costumes, of 21 women she admires, including Cher, Lady Gaga, Dame Edna, Shirley Bassey, Julie Andrews and Dolly Parton.
>>The Fringe, Jo’burg Theatre, Braamfontein, until March 25. Website: ceridupree.com.
- The world’s favourite ballet, Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake, is presented in all its classical authenticity by the acclaimed Universal Ballet of Korea this weekend.
The 58-member ballet company is based in Seoul and has dancers and staff from more than a dozen countries throughout Europe and Asia, as well as the United States. The company’s mission says it “embodies the blending of the grace and harmony of Asian thought and culture with the strength and beauty of Western classical ballet”. The work is performed with its original choreography by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov, with some adaptations by the company’s Oleg Vinogradov.
>>The Mandela Theatre, Jo’burg Theatre Complex, Braamfontein, on March 16 at 8pm, March 17 at 3pm and 8pm and March 18 at 3pm.
- The Maboneng Precinct is constantly undergoing development and one hopes that, given the popularity of the Bioscope, it will see an upgrade soon. Meanwhile, its handful of patrons enjoys the adventurous programming, which this weekend includes the latest offering of the controversial filmmaker Lars von Trier. The Bioscope will show Melancholia on the same day as its general circuit release. The psychological disaster movie stars Kirsten Dunst, Alexander Skarsgård, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Kiefer Sutherland. The venue is also showing Von Trier’s scary sex chiller Antichrist throughout March. Check the website for details, including a gig on March 17 by experimental jazz outfit Donkey at 8pm.
>>The Bioscope, Maboneng Precinct, 286 Fox Street. Opening on March 16 at 7.30pm. Website: thebioscope.co.za.
Compiled by Matthew Krouse