Thamsanqa Masoka

Dancer

I realized at primary school that I am performer when I made it to the front page of a local newspaper after a school performance. We performed mostly the Dramatic arts in primary school but there were other arts disciplines such as Gumboot Dance and Choral singing. Any formal training I received began after completion of a 3 year diploma in Theology and Philosophy. It was at JazzArt Dance Theatre in Cape Town where my performance art world widened its horizons. As part of our training we were encourage to create dance works, that’s when I realized I could be a choreographer. Since my training I haven’t stopped working on concepts in my head a lot of which are yet to be seen. I created my first solo called Schizophrenia. The piece didn’t just use movement but text which allowed me to show case my prior acting and creative writing ability. My most memorable and cherished performances are works by 3 of my mentors. First is a work Titled Unlimited by Mziyanda Steve Mancam, the second is Destination…Lerato by Ina Wisteregte Mogane and lastly former Artistic Director of the company Jacky Manyaapelo’s famous Waiting for Rain.

In 2014 I joined Moving into Dance Mophatong where I would later graduate. The wonderful part with MIDM is that I was getting training to be a dance teacher, an arts practitioner and gaining the knowledge of MIDM’s Founder Sylvia Glasser. During my time at MIDM I was part of the Sanlam Road Show under Nhlanhla Mahlangu’s leadership where I performed in all South Africa’s provinces, Festival of fame by Mark Hawkins, Jegermaister Company, Rejuvenation of Newtown Company to mention a few. Just when I thought I’d be done with MIDM I received a bursary to further my training as a company aspirant. I continued to be exposed to some amazing artists and organisations that have influenced my career such as Sibikwa Arts Centre, Vuyani Dance Theatre, Jessica Nupen, Nyaniso Dzedze and Yana Fay.

It was in 2018 when I joined Vuyani Dance Theatre as a Senior Dancer forming part of the company’s creative team. During my time at Vuyani I have directed multiple corporate performances, performed in Gregory Maqoma’s Cion: Requiem of Ravel’s Bolero as well as Rise which have both toured internationally. As part of Vuyani’s emerging voices in 2019 I created a group piece for Vuyani Week, Splendid Suns and in 2020 together with Musa Motha we created Ascend/Descend which part of the Market Theatre’s digital series, Ditshomo.