Student culture in Nothing but Vernac


Express Yourself in Nothing but Vernac, a Stuku event, was held on 23 March on the Aula grass. The evening combined the old Expression event, that was last held in 2015, and performances in indigenous languages of South Africa.

Residences set up stalls all along the sides of the Aula grass where they displayed visual art works and literature pieces within the theme of the butterfly effect: a change for the beautiful. Each residence was restricted to seven pieces each. Some residences like Madelief and Olienhout paired up to participate in this event. “Every residence’s own residents would [have] to then create original pieces,” said Thando Mtimkulu, a Stuku EC member. “This year we also included photography pieces,” Mtimkulu added. The artworks ranged from magnificent paintings to simple drawings and touching photos. Kiaat created a scene using playground materials, typical South African snacks and road signs that beautifully represented South African culture. Day students also had a stall to make the event more inclusive to all students and not just for residences as it has been in the past. The original pieces were judged by experts and lecturers in the Visual Arts and Literature departments.

 “[Nothing but] Vernac is a cultural showcase whereby people will show their pride [in] their cultures through story-telling, monologues, dialogues, [plays] and acting. There are also a few performances where people will sing,” said Rudi Peters, Stuku head of the event. Around 20 students took to the stage and gave the audience chilling and passionate performances in languages ranging from Xhosa to Afrikaans. A wide variety of performances, such as a dance piece and djembe drum performance, kept the evening exciting. According to student participant, Tara Cliff, the event incorporates everyone because if you cannot draw you can still participate by performing a piece, or simply look at the art and watch the performances. The showcase also included a special performance by Stuku GC member Sadé Msibi.

Stuku aims to make Express Yourself in Nothing but Vernac an annual event.


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