Pantsula & the Promised Land

Documentary project


Project description

The documentary Pantsula & the Promised Land is an incursion into the world of South African dance, pantsula, and into the creative process of Via Kanana by Via Katlehong Dance. With the testimonies of company director Buru Mohlabane, choreographer Gregory Maqoma and performer Julia Burnham.

Duration: 20 min.
Produced by Filigrane Archives

The show at the heart of the documentary

Founded in 1992 in Johannesburg, Via Katlehong Dance takes its name from Katlehong township, a disadvantaged neighbourhood where the protest culture of Pantsula was born. Like hip-hop, it has its roots in the street. In the 1990s, as a multi-ethnic South Africa slowly took shape, Via Katlehong Dance continued the protest struggle through shows and performances that combined the acrobatic dance movements of Pantsula and gumboot.

For Via Kanana, the company invited the South African creator Gregory Maqoma to combine the communicative energy of Via Katlehong Dance with his physical language in search of humanity and spirituality.
A choral piece, luminous and filled with hope!

The show at the heart of the documentary

With the participation of

With the participation of

Julia Burnham
Gregory Maqoma
Buru Mohlabane

FILIGRANE ARCHIVES production team

Direction Valérie Lessard
Video editing Gennaro De Pasquale
Coordination Justine Ricard
Communications Claudia Chan Tak

This documentary from Filigrane Archives was produced as part of the Webcast programming of Via Kanana from Via Katlehong Dance, a DIGIDANCE presentation.
DIGIDANCE is an initiative of Centre national des Arts (Ottawa), DanceHouse (Vancouver), Danse Danse (Montréal) and Harbourfront Centre (Toronto).


Cover image and still frames from Pantsula & the Promised Land © Filigrane Archives
Photos of Via Kanana © Christian Ganet