South Africa

PHOTO ESSAY

Carnival parade brings Afr’energy to the streets of Cape Town

Carnival parade brings Afr’energy to the streets of Cape Town
The Settlers High School and New World Dance Theatre at the Cape Town Carnival Afr'energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

Participants included drummers from Masiphumelele, the Western Province Marching Band and even members of the City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue Service. Marimba bands, magicians and fire dancers also made an appearance.

Hundreds of people lined the Fan Walk along Somerset and Main roads in Green Point on Saturday to enjoy the full splendour of the Cape Town Carnival parade for the first time in four years. 

Hand-crafted floats and more than 1,600 performers from across the city entertained the crowd in a display of culture and collective creativity, under the theme Afr’energy.

Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis said the carnival was a “vibrant” experience to be enjoyed by all residents and tourists. 

“From the floats to performances, this event is a celebration of individual creativity, ingenuity and diversity. We look forward to this year’s carnival bringing spectacular colour and life to Cape Town’s streets once more, along with many economic benefits for our city and residents,” he said.

The Bella Donna’s brightening up the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

Members of the Aphrodite Belly Dancing Studio at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

Gaia and lead performers of Ubuntu float at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

Leda Botha letting go of all her worries on the SOAR float at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

The Chinese community showing off their powerful fire dragon at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

The SOAR float before the parade started at Green Point at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

Fire dancers showing their strength of courage at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

A giraffe stilt walker making friends with the crowd at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

Cape Town fire fighters were a firm favourite with the large crowd at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

Thousands of people lined the streets in Green Point at the Cape Town Carnival Afr’energy on 18 March 2023 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo: Gallo Images / Brenton Geach)

Western Province MEC of cultural affairs and sport, Anroux Marais, spoke about the importance of cultivating creativity of the youth

“The Cape Town Carnival is one of these spaces that allows our youth to see the possibility of the creative sector. While our young creatives are able to display their skills in the parade, it is also a joyous experience to see young people watching the event and see their faces light up. This is how we show the power of the arts sector.”

Organisers said the festival involved more than 40 community groups from across the city. Participants included drummers from Masiphumelele, the Western Province Marching Band and even members of the City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue Service. Marimba bands, magicians and fire dancers also made an appearance. 

Cape Town Carnival Participation Department assistant Bandile Skweyiya said the theme Afr’energy was about collective strength. “[It’s about] summoning our courage, Afrofuture into the Afronow.” DM

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