Vuyani Dance Company Dancers
Julia began dancing at a young age with various community groups in Alexandra Township. Burnham did Modern dance and traditional dance forms which influenced her to join Moving into Dance Mophatong (MIDM), where she later progressed to be a full time company member. She has worked with various choreographers and accomplished an award for best upcoming dancer for the Joburg City Festival. She took part in the first crossings project and the 2010 Fifa World Cup Concert for artists like Shakira, Black Eyed Peas and Lira. Burnham has toured in various countries like Switzerland, France, Germany, London, Australia, Columbia and Italy with the work of Robyn Orlin whilst at MIDM Company.
In 2014, Burnham joined Vuyani Dance Theatre where she worked closely with Gregory Maqoma and Luyanda Sidiya. She has taken part in the Metro FM Annual Awards, appeared in Kudu which is a collaboration between Vuyani Dance Theatre and Eric Trufaz and The Quartet, she has also performed at the Presidential Inaugurations, appeared in Fullmoon, Ketekang directed by James Ncobo and various other gigs.
Julia is a senior company member at VDT and in 2016 choreographed her own work titled Something Black and Yellow which was staged at the Market Theatre for Vuyani Week.
Otto Andile Nhlapo
Otto Andile Nhlapo born and raised in Heidelberg (Ratanda). Started out with the Juvenile Development Cultural Group in 2004, specialising in Zulu dance genres (Umkhomazi, Isizingili, Ushamen and Umzansi) and Pantsula dance. He has performed for dignitaries including President Jacob Zuma, former President Thabo Mbeki and FIFA President Joseph Sepp Blatter. In 2010 he joined MIDM Performing Arts Training Course and had an opportunity to study and perform in various events, he also worked with Robyn Orlin in her work titled Beauty, toured 11 cities in France. 2012 He won the pick of the stepping stones Dance Umbrella Festival with his solo work titled Dirty Hands.
In 2013 he joined Vuyani Dance Theatre as a junior company member and, after three months he was promoted to be a senior company member, where he then got an opportunity to tour with the company overseas. He has toured countries like Finland, Germany, Sweden, Holland, Canada, China and New York to name a few. He performed at the Metro FM annual awards 2013 to 2015, sharing the stage with various South African musicians. In 2014, he also performed with the company at the Presidential Inauguration.
He had the privilege to perform works of great choreographers in the country, works like Four Seasons, Full Moon, Kudu and Wake up choreographed by Gregory Vuyani Maqoma. In addition, he also performed works like Umnikelo, Dominion, Siva and 7 Pillars choreographed by Luyanda Sidiya. And also performed Transformations choreographed by Sylvia Glasser. He choreographed for the song Ndiredi by Simphiwe Dana on the production (Joys of Sharing) presented by Vuyani Dance Theatre, Featuring Wouter Kellerman and Simphiwe Dana, directed by Greg Maqoma.
Wilkens, a professional Ballroom and Latin American dancer in Championship level and 7 times undefeated title owner. She then got introduced to a whole new world of dancing when she joined MID in 2010 where she was trained in African Contemporary Dance. In 2011 she joined Vuyani Dance Theatre as a trainee, then a junior and now a fully-fledged senior company member. She has since worked with different choreographers that helped shape her career into what it is now. The likes of Themba Nkabinde, Kefiloe Morand, Sbonakaliso Ndaba, Luyanda Sidiya and her current director Gregory Maqoma. Her highlights were being part of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, ANC Centenary Celebration 2013, The Metro Awards 2013, Vienne Jazz Festival 2013, perfoming at the Presidential Inaugurations 2014, Golden Hearts Awards and the Drug Abuse Campaign in Soweto . She has been travelling and performing in and around the world like Sweden, Germany, France, Finland, Amsterdam, New York and her place of birth South Africa.
Mndebele started his dance career in 2011 at the East Rand School of the Arts with Zwelethu Sebolai, Mabiki Sediane and Carmen Douglas. He joined Vuyani Dance Theatre in 2013 as a trainee where he performed with the company in Dominion, one of Luyanda Sidiya’s amazing works as his debut in the professional world of contemporary and theatre. He has performed at the Metro FM Music Awards, Fall for Dance Festival in New York City, Kudu which is a collaboration between Vuyani Dance Theatre and Eric Truffaz Quartet which travelled to a few cities around France in 2014 and 2015, National Presidential Inauguration, Full Moon production which featured the National Youth Orchestra, Mazda Launch, De Beers and Jewellex, to mention a few. He recently got promoted to being a senior dancer in the company.
Sinazo Bokolo-Bruns was born and raised in Johannesburg but originally from eCofimvaba a small town in the Eastern Cape. She went to Fairways Primary School then attended the Michael Mount Waldorf School. She trained with the Ballet Theatre Afrikan Dance Academy with Martin Schoenberg for 5 years and was strictly trained in ballet and then venturing off to Moving into Dance to be introduced to Contemporary African Dance .
At the age of 17 she moved to Cape Town where she then attended the JAZZART dance joint classes to then audition to being accepted into the Jazzart Dance Theatre’s three-year Training and job creation Program, here she was Introduced to many different genres of dance such as Gumboot, Tap, Indian, Salsa, Pantsula and Hip Hop. Sinazo was then accepted to be part of the Jazzart professional company and stayed on for two years. She then worked with Sibonelo Dance Project directed by Mzo Gasa.
Within her years of training she has attended many workshops within and out of South Africa broadening her artistry and wanting to constantly push her boundaries, with her main focus being wanting to learn and give back to disadvantaged communities. She is currently at Vuyani Dance Theatre as a junior dancer.