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New sounds / ancient tools
In this podcast series, musician and musicologist Cara Stacey interviews leading indigenous music specialists from across southern Africa about their beginnings, their praxis, and the highs and lows of working in indigenous musics.


Gugulethu Duma (aka D U M A M A) explores intersectionality in her transdiscplinary artistic practice allowing the structures in formlessness to simply be. Her practice involves consciously deconstructing and critiquing archaic modes of representation of Southern African/African sonic and performance culture, while also composing music for herself and others. Ritualising modes of togetherness, Dumama is concerned with the ways in which new forms can organically emerge when collaborations can center in intimacy and openness.


Her interests intersect as practice based performance research, and interdisciplinary, collaborative bodies of work centred around political-poetic imaginations. As a compelling storyteller and lyricist, she works to seamlessly to mend together the divide between traditional South African oral culture and futuristic globally-oriented poetics, with a delicate care and awareness of the value of both. As one part of the duo dumama + kechou, Dumama released her debut album buffering juju in 2020. Weaving together childhood songs, stories and personal memories with electronic hues and gestures, she resists typical archival practices around oral traditions and advocates for a recalibration of our transcendental, futuristic Black and African sense of being and belonging.


As an emerging curator and cultural organiser, Gugulethu intentionally works to bring artists together in immersive sensory experiences. Her debut curatorial venture ancestral body noise, produced in collaboration with Oyoun Berlin, is a testament to this. This premiered at the cutting edge curatorial focus, Emobodied Temporalities , as as a performance workshop intervention. This performance workshop and exhibition brought together artists from the diaspora based in Berlin, challenging them to dig into their individual opaque ancestral relations to the African continent, and bring them into the present in order to generate contemporatary approaches to forms of ritual and engagements with archiving, performance and narrative making for the future.


Her current ongoing process as an artist in residency with Solo Magic Radical Black Femme Project, is a personal reflection on digital ritual, mourning in the morning and voicing what hope owes to the night.