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10 Cultural Events You Can't Miss this June in South Africa

OkayAfrica's guide to must-see events happening in South Africa this June.

June is Youth Month in South Africa and it promises to be lit AF. South Africans are undeniably spoiled for choice as our exciting guide will show you. From comedy shows, powerful theatrical productions to performances by the country's finest musicians, June promises to deliver a little bit of something for everybody.

Take a look at the 10 cultural events you can't afford to miss below.


Juliet Cullinan Standard Bank Wine Festival

To all the wine lovers, this one is definitely for you. This also goes for those who've been thinking about venturing into the world of merlot and pinotage wines. You have the opportunity to access some of the most exclusive wines in the country and you get to chat to a number of expert cell masters about all things wine. Bottoms up.


Will take place at Summer Place in Melville, Johannesburg on 4th and 5th June. Purchase tickets here.

Encounters International Documentary Festival

A directive from the best film festivals in the world, Encounters will be screening a diverse range of this year's critically acclaimed documentaries. From documentaries looking at runway fashion to conspiracy theories, racism and even a tribute to the great Fela Kuti, this festival will only be delivering the very best the world of film has to offer.


Will run from 7-16th June at The Bioscope in Maboneng, Johannesburg. Purchase tickets here.

Blacks Only Cabinet Reshuffle

The Blacks Only Comedy show is undoubtedly the most anticipated comedy show in the country. Now in its 16th year, this year's show will take the audience through the controversial cabinet reshuffle and the nation's political woes. With comedy god David Kau as the host, the show will certainly not disappoint. Sifiso Nene, Celeste Ntuli and Conrad Koch are just some of the comedians who'll have you in stitches and your sides hurting.


Will take place at Montecasino's Teatro on 7th June. Purchase tickets here.

The Crucifixion of Amaqgwirha

At at time when South Africa is dealing with the terrifying rise in the abductions of girls, this theatrical production tells the story of four young friends–all girls–who are desperate to find one of their missing friends. They also have to confront the men who stand in their way. Using indigenous folk tales and shadow puppetry to bring the story to life, this promises to be a worthwhile show.

Will run from 14-16th June at Civic Boulevard, Johannesburg. Purchase tickets here.

Soweto International Jazz Festival

Who doesn't love some good ol' jazz? Take a walk down memory lane and enjoy African storytelling told through the mellow sounds of incredible instrumentals and vocals. Celebrate the beauty of music and both the veterans and contemporaries of the genre in the heart of Soweto.

Will run from 14-16th June at GOG Soweto Gardens in Johannesburg. Purchase tickets here.

Yvonne Chaka Chaka and various artists for World Refugee Day

Veteran musician and BET's Global Good Star Yvonne Chaka Chaka along with jazz artist Sibongile Khumalo and a number of other artists will be performing to raise awareness for refugees. Partnering with organisations such as the Turquoise Harmony Institute and Nelson Mandela Foundation, this will definitely be a memorable evening in support of a worthy cause.

Will take place at Linder Auditorium in Parktown, Johannesburg on 21st June. Purchase tickets here.

National Arts Festival

National Arts Festival, 2010 via Flickr Creative Commons

This is irrefutably the biggest cultural event to take place in the country. An annual festival, the National Arts Festival includes everything from musical performances, dance, theater to art and comedy. Featured shows will include the likes of Afro-pop group Mafikizolo and comedian Dylan Moran.

Will run from 27th June to 7 July in Makhanda, Grahamstown. Open to the public for the most part but some shows require ticket purchases. Click here for more information.

The Greatest Love of All: A Tribute to Whitney Houston

Jens-Ulrich Koch/Getty Images

The talented Belinda Davids will be bringing Whitney Houston's musical legacy to the stage with mind-blowing performances of some of the late singer's greatest hits. Nostalgic already? We don't blame you. Do yourself a favor and go and celebrate the magical experience complete with a live band and dancers.


Will run from 05-28th June at Joburg Theater. Purchase tickets here.

Khehla Chepape Makgato Studio Exhibition

The talented Khehla Chepape Makgato will be giving the public an opportunity to view over a decade's worth of work. In a reflective body entitled The Rituals, and inspired by the 2012 Marikana massacre, Makgato explores the sacred relationship between animals and the rituals performed by Black people in an attempt to communicate with their ancestors. Recently, the artist has been using birds to document parts of his childhood.

Will open on the 29th June at Constitution Hill, Johannesburg. Open to the public.

DJ Shimza’s One-Man Show

If you're looking to just turn the fuck up then DJ Shimza's annual one-man show is it. As in previous years, the musical event promises to be absolutely packed and full of good vibes. Celebrating the 10th anniversary of his show, the seasoned DJ promises to bring nothing but his A-game.

Will take place at Zone 6 Venue in Diepkloof, Soweto on 29th June. Purchase tickets here.

Interview

Sarkodie Is Not Feeling Any Pressure

The elite Ghanaian rapper affirms his king status with this seventh studio album, No Pressure.

Sarkodie is one of the most successful African rappers of all time. With over ten years of industry presence under his belt, there's no question about his prowess or skin in the game. Not only is he a pioneer of African hip-hop, he's also the most decorated African rapper, having received over 100 awards from close to 200 nominations over the span of his career.

What else does Sarkodie have to prove? For someone who has reached and stayed at the pinnacle of hip-hop for more than a decade, he's done it all. But despite that, he's still embracing new growth. One can tell just by listening to his latest album, No Pressure, Sarkodie's seventh studio album, and the follow-up to 2019's Black Love which brought us some of the Ghanaian star's best music so far. King Sark may be as big as it gets, but the scope of his music is still evolving.

Sonically, No Pressure is predominantly hip-hop, with the first ten tracks offering different blends of rap topped off with a handful of afrobeats and, finally, being crowned at the end with a gospel hip-hop cut featuring Ghanaian singer MOG. As far as the features go, Sark is known for collaborating mostly with his African peers but this time around he branches out further to feature a number of guests from around the world. Wale, Vic Mensa, and Giggs, the crème de la crème of rap in America and the UK respectively all make appearances, as well as Nigeria's Oxlade, South Africa's Cassper Nyovest, and his fellow Ghanaian artists Darkovibes and Kwesi Arthur.

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