Open Book Fest connects Dutch & SA poets

MEC for Community Safety, Dan Plato addresses young people at the civic centre in Ocean View.
The Kingdom of the Netherlands continues to partner with the Open Book Festival which gets underway from Wednesday September 5 to Sunday September 9 in Cape Town.

The partnership between the Poetica programme and national Dutch campaign in South Africa known as #cocreateSA, will welcome popular spoken word artists Babs Gons and Ivan Words to the city.

The duo will work with both established and up-and-coming local artists in writing sessions as part of journeys with poetry, solo and collaborative performances, discussions and workshops using rap, poetry and the spoken word.

Netherlands Consul General Sebastiaan Messerschmidt  said: “Being newly appointed in this role, I am incredibly excited about this partnership and what has been achieved in the past three years. Open and honest dialogues, especially through art forms like poetry and rap, have the power to break down barriers and provide opportunities to connect and grow in new and refreshing ways.”

Dutch writer and performer Babs Gons agreed, “I think the exchange of work with artists of other places is necessary because spoken word, poetry is a reflection of what’s going on in the world and you need to get out of the confined spaces you live in. But also, poetry is a constant wave of new forms, voices, styles and I’m very much looking forward to experiencing new voices, new winds and also to write and perform together in new spaces, and with new company.”

South African and Dutch artists will also be part of a three day Journey of Poetry, where they will attend writing workshops and explore a different spaces, including Deer Park, the University of the Western Cape and Muizenberg.