The Gordon Institute of Performing and Creative Arts (GIPCA) will be hosting a conference on the artistic intersection between dance and film from the 26th to the 28th of August. Filmmakers and choreographers will switch roles in the process of creating an interdisciplinary art form known as screen dance.

Film and Dance, a weekend long event will probe a rising new art form that combines film making with choreography. Dance on film is slowly becoming the new visual language of our time. We see it in commercials, music videos, feature films and series and on viral online clips. Young choreographers also make use of digital media in live performances and continue to record dance on film for archive purposes.

Through these practices a new exciting hybrid genre has been born: dance for the camera, commonly know as screen dance or the dance film. Artists in dance, film and visual arts have been exploring screen dance since the beginning of the 20th century. However it has only recently been recognized as a new hybrid genre in South Africa.

The event will open with the South African premiere of German Filmmaker, Wim Wenders’ highly acclaimed PINA. Shot in 3D with the ensemble of the Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch. This feature-length dance film portrays the exhilarating and inimitable art of this great German choreographer who died in the summer of 2009. Thanks to The latest possibilities created by digital 3D technology, Wenders found the aesthetic means to bring the unique plasticity and emotional expressiveness of Pina Bausch’s innovative Tanztheater to the cinema screen. Only now can the dimension of the space be reproduced in the cinema. It is this dimension in which movement and dance take place, and into which the new 3D cinema can take the viewer on a sensual journey of discovery. 

The event continues on Saturday with an opening guest lecture entitled 100 year of dance for the camera by Deirdre Towers, producer of the 35th dance on camera festival in New York. Deirdre has written about dance film and flamenco for over twenty publications, including Dance Magazine where she worked for 5 years, and served on the juries of Dance Screen, Grand Prix de Video Danse, the International Emmys, and the American Dance Festival.

Panel discussions will include Real Place and Virtual Space featuring choreographers and videographers who have collaborated creating live performances with projection; Festivals and Funding a look at existing international and local dance film fests and the latest trends in formatting, style, distribution and audience response and Screen dance in the shifting landscape of film and new media will introduce the latest trends in technology and its effects on the artistic product.

Additional guest speakers include Danish South African Choreographer and filmmaker Jeannette Ginslov, Choreographer Nelisiwe Xaba, Filmmaker and lecturer Mocke van Veuren, Festival director and visual artist Kai Lossgott, visual artist and architect Doung Jahangeer and many more.

The weekend conference will provide artists with the opportunity to network as well as discover and experience the exciting possibilities of dance on screen. Tickets prices are R100 (conference and screening of PINA on Friday evening); R60 (conference only) and R50 for the Saturday screening (including 3D glasses). Student tickets are R60 for conference and screening and R40 for conference only. Bookings open 11 August. For more information please go to our website: or contact Tel: 021 480 7156 email: Please be advised that seating is limited and early bookings are essential.

Film and Dance – Full Programme available for download.

Film and Dance audio recordings:

Keynote address – Deidre Towers audio recording

Development of Screendance in Africa – Deidre Towers audio recording

Panel 1 – Filmmaker as Choreographer and Choreographer as Filmmaker audio recording

Panel 2 – Real Place and Virtual Space – Video Art and Choreography audio recording

Panel 3 – Screendance Festivals and Funding audio recording

Screen Dance and The Global Network – Jeannette Ginslov audio recording

Panel 4 – Screen Dance in the Shifting Landscape of Film and New Media audio recording

Panel 5 – Theory in Practice – Screen Dance and the Interdisciplinary Curriculum audio recording

Film and Dance video recordings:

Start: 26 Aug ’11

End: 28 Aug ’11

Cost: R40 - R100


Organizer: GIPCA


Venue: Hiddingh Campus 

Phone: +27 21 480 7156 

Address: Google Map 31-37 Orange Street, Cape Town, 8001, South Africa