Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel
Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel Studio Julian Hetzel
MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU MENU

SPAfrica

SPAfrica

SPAfrica is a performance about empathy and extractivism. A project that explores how capitalism is connected to racism.

Julian Hetzel and Ntando Cele join forces to explore the limits of empathy – the capacity to understand or feel what another person is experiencing. What if empathy doesn’t change or overcome power structures but reinforces existing privileges? SPAfrica reveals the problematic mechanisms and hidden racism of its working.

SPAfrica introduces a two-fold gesture about extracting ‘liquid empathy’ and builds upon the transaction of resources between Europe and Africa – water for tears and tears for water. On the one hand, drinking water from the sub-Saharan regions is imported into Europe: SPAfrica – the world’s first ’empathy drink’. On the other hand, tears are farmed at the heart of Europe and transferred to the source of the water in Africa. The project juxtaposes the exploitation of natural and emotional resources, exposing neoliberal strategies in the search for alternative raw materials.

In their new creation, Hetzel and Cele question how intangible assets such as identity and cultural background are capitalised on. In the international art market, the cultural background and the identity of the protagonists have become valuable resources for value creation. Is trauma the new gold of the arts?

Premiere: 11 May, Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne (CH)
Dutch première: 21 mei, SPRING Festival Utrecht (NL)

26-04-2024
Donau Festival, Krems (AT)
27-04-2024
Donau Festival, Krems (AT)
28-04-2024
Donau Festival, Krems (AT)
28-05-2024
KunstFestSpiele Herrenhausen, Hannover (DE)
29-05-2024
DJ SPAfrica at opening party Impulse Festival, Cologne (DE)
30-05-2024
Impulse Festival, Cologne (DE)
31-05-2024
Impulse Festival, Cologne (DE)
"The clever performance SPAfrica takes a closer look at white audiences’ empathy ★★★★☆"
- De Volkskrant, Annette Embrechts Read more
"It's a call for critical dialogue rather than hollow “alliances”"
- NRC Handelsblad, Marijn Lems Read more
"Clever, complex, irritating and at the same time extremely entertaining and humorous"
- Theater der Zeit, Teresa Schütz Read more
"It seems like the performer is always one step ahead of the audience, exposing and confronting even the most ‘naturalized,’ yet inherently racist assumptions and associations."
- SPRING report, Agata Kok Read more
"Reality catching up with art and then being sent back into its cage. Impressive"
- Theaterkrant, Fransien van der Putt Read more
"Een Uur Cultuur - Interview"
- NPO Radio 1, Teddy Tops Listen
"In 'SPAfrica' by Ntando Cele and Julian Hetzel, real and unreal, autobiographical material and theatrical tricks are intertwined from beginning to end."
- Marina Kaptijn in PZAZZ Read more

Concept: Julian Hetzel and Ntando Cele
Direction: Julian Hetzel
Performance: Ntando Cele
Dramaturgy: Miguel Angel Melgares
Artistic advisor: Sodja Lotker, Khanyisile Mbongwa
Music & composition: Frank Wienk
Light design: Nico de Rooij
Technical coordination: Vincent Beune, Aengus Havinga (previously: Cesco van der Zwaag, Martijn van Nunen, Bea Verbeek)
Technicians: Tom Doeven, Simon Kelaita, Bea Verbeek, Wout Jansen
Technical solutions: Merijn Versnel, Guido Bevers
Production coordinator: Marieke van den Bosch
Production Cape Town: Lungile Mbongwa
Galerist Cape Town: Mpilo Ngcukana
Production assistant: Jana Riese
Assistant costume designer: Merel van Erpers Roijaards
Mask artist: Carly Heathcote
Make-up artist: Julia Markow
Prop maker: Saskia Hartog
Video Documentation: Reynold Reynolds, Bongeka Ngcobo
Photography: Alexandra Masmanidi, Anouk Maupu

Special thanks to the local hosts of the artist talk