South Africa’s favourite ‘Uni town’, Stellenbosch
In the midst of Stellenbosch’s old-world charm, shady oak-lined streets, rolling vineyards, and delicious food and wine is the heart of a forever-young town bursting at the seams with bustling street cafes, night time happenings and a community of trendy students.
South Africa’s second oldest town is also one of the country’s most famous Uni towns with Stellenbosch University taking the lead and a host of culinary, design and sporting institutions adding to its youthful vibe.
The history of Stellenbosch University dates back to the 17th century. Now in 2015 there are ten faculties of study spread over five campuses around the Cape with the main campus situated in Stellenbosch. It is one of the top Universities in the world, ranking 390 in the QS World University Rankings for 2014/ 2015, attracting a diverse group of students from South Africa and abroad. Only three Universities in South Africa made the list this year, ranking under 400, including the University of Cape Town and the University of Witwatersrand.
In 2014, the University of Stellenbosch saw over 29 000 students walk its hallowed halls. The University strives toward a welcoming campus culture that makes all students, staff and visitors feel at home, thereby creating an environment that enables multicultural exchanges and learning in a democratic South Africa.
Martin Viljoen, Senior Media Liaison Practitioner at the University of Stellenbosch, says; “Stellenbosch University had a good start to the year with some 5 000 new students making the town their new home. Not only did the welcoming week introduce students to all Stellenbosch can offer, but new Maties also took part in the activities of MAD2 (Making A Decision 2 Make A Difference); a fun, student-driven, fundraising project in aid of Maties Community Service (MCS).”
Annemarie Ferns, CEO of Stellenbosch 360 also commented; “Stellenbosch strikes just the right balance, making it a town for all ages. It is a hub for business, study and leisure; able to showcase all three aspects of the town at once, often with more than a nod to the students and youthful atmosphere around Stellenbosch University. Now in its sixteenth year, one of our favourite events on the University’s calendar is the annual Woordfees, which is a celebration of the spoken word with a focus on the Afrikaans language and culture.”
From 6 – 15 March 2015 the public is invited to experience poetry, stories, drama workshops, entertainment and more across the University campus buildings and in the town centre.
• ‘Aan die Braak’ is a series of theatre skits running from 7 – 13 March at the Aan de Braak Teater.
• ‘Diskoers’ is a series of talks and exchange forums led by opinion leaders and well-known presenters of Radio Sonder Grense, from 9 – 13 March.
• ‘Kinderfees’ is the children’s festival component of the program offering a safe and fun environment for kids to enjoy a range of activities and shows suited to different age groups, from 6 – 15 March.
• ‘Klassieke Musiek’ is a series of classical music performances throughout Woordfees by artists ranging from solo pianists to choir groups.
• The ‘Blaauwklippen Kunsfees’ is a collection of art spaces and galleries that can be visited throughout the festival period.
• ‘Sanlam Musiekfees’ is series of music concerts throughout Woordfees that speaks to Afrikaans traditions and heritage, performed by some of South Africa’s most revered artists and composers.
• The ‘Skrywersfees’ is a series of appearances by prominent Afrikaans authors from 9 – 14 March.
• ‘Van die spens tot op die skaal’ is a series of talks and cooking demonstrations on healthy living and eating from 9 – 14 March.
• ‘Toneelfees’ is a series of short theatre performances that run throughout the Woordfees programme, including a show by Alan Committie and appearances by 7de Laan actors.
• ‘WOW’ – ‘Woorde Open Wệrelde’ is a series of events targeted at students to inform them about the opportunities and career moves available in the global space for creative sectors like language, literature and the arts.
• Lastly, ‘Onse Aktiwiteite’ is a range of different events hosted by Stellenbosch University and Woordfees sponsors, from architectural walks and a Langarm dance, to poetry sessions and live radio broadcasts.
Visit www.woordfees.co.za for the full festival programme.
Tickets to the various events on the programme can be booked via www.computicket.com at varying prices.