Q – The first time I saw you perform , was at the old Melville Theater. I remember the poetry and dance balanced each other perfeclty. It was unique, fresh and exotic. How did !bushwomen come to being?
A – The gift of poetry was manifested in me in 1999 while hopistalized for severe depression. I was just writing stuff to get rid of the demons inside me. Years later I showed Laverne some of my writings and she told me that it’s poetry. She suggested I do spoken word and entered me into a Yfm competition at Horror Café in Newtown. I got into the finals and had to be interviewed live on Yfm. I was nervous so I asked Laverne to join me and sing a little tune in the background. We were called back on Yfm two more times and so people assumed that we were a duo. Laverne has been trained as a classical soloist since age 8.
She writes her own songs and I joined two of her songs with two of my poems. Not long after that, we did a show in Melville (I think it’s the same show you were at, Wesley) and we spontaneously started dancing. It wasn’t planned or anything. We both started dancing at a very young age so it just came naturally. And that is how !Bushwomen came into being.
Q – Your new production tilted ` Who Am I` sounds like its all do with insecurities.. Without giving too much away what’s it all about?
A – Who Am I? is a stage production which combines drama, poetry, song and dance. Tereska wrote the play and Laverne is directing it. It tells the story of a young girl who doesn’t know where she comes from or who she is. All she knows is people telling her what she is and what she’s not.
She then asks this fundamental question: Who am I? and two spiritual guides come to her aid and guide her on a journey of self-discovery wherein she is forced to acknowledge her confusion and face childhood traumas. Guided by her Inner Voice and her Spirit, this journey of highs and lows highlights themes such as heritage, love, abuse and womanhood. Little Girl is transformed and finally steps into self-love and acceptance where she can confidently answer to who she is.
!Bushwomen on stage
Q – I believe you have a new member. Your family must be bursting with talent, tell us about her and what can we look forward to?
A – We are delighted to have our baby sister, Tyla, join the group. She is fifteen and has a voice that will blow you away. She doesn’t have any formal training in singing like Laverne so Laverne is coaching her at the moment. She has a passion for hip-hop dancing although she regards herself as more of an academic than an artist – she aspires to be an actuarial accountant one day.
At the moment she’s just having a lot of fun hanging out with her older sisters. The role of Little Girl was actually written for her but she is still being groomed for it. She is assistant director of the play. She knows the play better than all of us and we can’t do without her.
Q – Are you working on any cd`s, dvd how can your fans get hold of your product?
A – We are currently undergoing negotiations with possible funders to launch our CD. We are perfectionists so we want to ensure we release a product of excellent quality. We want it to be BIG!
Q – Artist are such hopeless romantics, we love to dream. Id like the last question to be a bit personal. Is !Bushwomen living their dream, is there room for growth?
A – On one level, we are half-way there. We are artists and nothing gives us more pleasure that practicing our art. We want to do this full-time and travel around the world, spreading our message of hope and healing. On another level, not many people know that !Bushwomen is about social change. !Bushwomen is about restoring hope to a people who don’t know where they come from and what their worth is.
Our dream is for each and every person in our beautiful country and the rest of the world to be confident about who they are, no matter what their colour, gender, background or social standing is. No discrimination. Just love and respect for yourself and your fellow human being. Yes, it’s a gigantic dream but we are up for the challenge. The struggle continues!