Doc Edge Festival 2019 in association with RNZ presents a series of documentary screenings at the auditorium at The Auckland Art Gallery, Toi o Tāmaki, as part of the 2019 Auckland Festival, May 31 - June 9.
Canada | 2019 | 84 min | English, Xhosa | Dir. M. Vikram Dasgupta | World Premiere
When young Siphe November leaves home to follow his dreams, he encounters expectation, loss, prejudice and resilience.
Growing up in Zolani, a segregated township outside Cape Town, South Africa, Siphe is surrounded by his family's love for dance, but his extraordinary potential only becomes clear when he and his brothers start dancing with their first teacher, Fiona Sutton Sargeant.
From a privileged community across the mountains, Fiona displays both passion and frustration as she pushes the boys to commit to their talent. When Fiona invites a family of Canadian travellers to watch the children perform, Siphe's talent moves them to sponsor his education at a good school so he can dedicate more time to dancing.
Siphe's talent takes him much further away from his home when he is accepted into Canada's National Ballet School in Toronto. Over the next seven years, he pushes the limits of his talent, tackles an intensive training regimen, and soars on stages around the world while growing up away from his family, all with a unique body that breaks the traditional ballet aesthetic.
At the same time, he must navigate evolving relationships with the important people in his life: his mother, with whom he feels a profound duty to help live a better life; with Fiona, who is thrilled for Siphe, but wishes he would become a role model and give back to his community; with his Canadian family, who strive to help him feel at home in two countries; and with his brother Mthuthu, a professional choreographer and dancer in Europe.
Part of Doc Edge Festival 2019, visit docedge.nz for more information & the complete 2019 Festival Programme