Cape Town Carnival reveals the Heart of the City

Cape Town – On the 12th of March approximately 50 thousand spectators attended the 7th annual Cape Town Carnival. The boulevards along Greenpoint Fan Walk with its distinct theme #StreetLife.

The Cape Town Carnival’s parade began at 19:00 and continued until 21:30 and featuring over 50 community groups which comprised of 2 thousand talented dancers, actors, musicians. These performers mesmerised the onlookers with their fire’s breath, choreographed dances and rhythmic drumming. Entertainers of all ethnic groups collaborated to celebrate Cape Town’s diversity, creativity and cultural narratives.

Photograph courtesy of Chris Hitchcock

It takes an entire year to prepare the event, The Cape Town Carnival displayed decorative platforms and artworks; intricate floats and designs that each represented an aspect of ‘Street Life.’ Along the 2km-long parade, everyone was able to see the Graphic Traffic Academy, Township Angel and The Heart of the City.

Office and Project Co-coordinator Sharnelle Hill says that her favourite act was Graphic Traffic, a float that revealed the “energy and synergy” by displaying the stop streets and signs of Cape town. Hill explains that Street life embodies the, “things that we come into contact with, things that we encounter and things that we that we don’t necessarily take note of.”

Creative director Brad Baard explains what the theme means to him: “Street Life is about the people and dynamics at play in a public space. Towns and cities are built of people and relationships, not bricks and concrete. We all have different styles and cultures, but are connected by the vibrancy of the streets. Street Life aims to make these invisible connections visible.”

The Carnival embraced this theme – working alongside essential members such as fire-fighters, municipal workers, school children, cyclists, marathon runners, street sweepers, doctors and refugees. The performers revealed a number of urban narratives demonstrating Cape Town’s vibrancy, energy and heart.

Photo courtesy of Chris Hitchcock

The Carnival brings tourists and locals alike to participate in the event.  The bystanders dress to impress with glittered, masked and painted faces creating a unified dynamism between performer and spectator. Hill says, “It was really overwhelming, to see how the crowd engaged with the performances.” The excitement was palpable and the annual attenders had the veteran foresight to arrive early with their chairs and even ladders to get that ideal spot.

The Cape Town Carnivals theme #StreetLife sought to “highlight how every member of our society has a street that they can call home within our electric hub of a city – a space where we can all come together and feel connected.”

Photo courtesy of Chris Hitchcock



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