by Sicka Stabane
Nothing is greater than having the chance to tell your own story to people who have never heard about you. Telling your own story is very important because as Africans our stories have been told the way others want to read them and not how we want them to be told. On the 26th of November I received a forwarded email from Lerato Dumse, asking me if I was interested and available in what she forwarded. The subject of the email was written “France Culture / and Radio live project Nov. 30th at the Centre for The Less Good Idea”, I took my time and read the email before getting excited about something I didn’t know was about. The email was from someone called Aurelie Charon and the email was directed to Zanele Muholi asking her for young people to partake in their project and voice out LGBTI issues through their own experiences. Immediately after reading that I got excited and responded and agreed to this opportunity. Lerato gave them my contact details and immediately after a few minutes I was invited to a group chat on WhatsApp tittled “Radiolive Joburg Sicka“. The invite was followed by a voice note, information about what is Radiolive and how it started, the clip explained how this project is documented and a poster of the event. There were only 3 people on the group chat which was Aurelie Charon, Caroline Fillet and I. I had a picture of what they were proposing to me but I wanted to be 100% sure that I completely understand what is expected from me, so I agreed to meeting them the following day at my home in Daveyton. Later that day, waiting impatiently for my mum to come back from work to share the great news which seemed the universe was torturing me because she came home late that day super tired. When I told her she got excited and all teary and telling my little sister and I how lucky she is to have daughters like us and she was energized by my great news.
The following day which was the 27th I woke up early ready to prepare for my visitors , after walking out of my bedroom door I realised mom has done the honors😊❤, my heart was overwhelmed to have a very supportive mother like her. At 10am Aurelie and Caroline arrived excited to meet me and vise versa. Our conversation started with two cups of coffee and a recorder. Before I could even start telling them about myself, they already had some information about what I do and some of my music. They told me about how they conduct their project, what was expected of me and people who will be part of this project, then after I told them a summary of my life from growing up to where I am today.
They had a few questions and after our meeting we took a few pictures. Caroline then told me they will send a driver to come fetch me and I can bring along 3 other people, sadly I couldn’t take my mother, father (step) because my mum had to take my dad to hospital to remove stitches on his spine after his operation and my little sister went to visit our cousin in Leondale. I took my partner in music Tshepo Jacobs aka Major Short, 2 of the pupils I am currently grooming in music Thamisanqa Appolis aka Tee-Q-Trill and Themba Ndlovu aka Tee-Rex Gatsheni.
On the day of the event which was the 30th, I rocked an outfit my mum and I made with some material from Mozambique, which I received as a gift from Fiona Nube a close friend of mine. We all looked hot and Thami kept shooting clips of us bragging about having a chauffeur. The event was at Maboneng precinct at the “Centre for The Less Good Idea“, we arrived and they were still finishing up with the preparations.
I met with the other individuals who are part of the project, Gilbert Mwape who is originally from DRC, Ponte tour guide, but resides in Joburg, Ines Tanovic Sijercic from Sarajevo who is a Bosnian activist, Anzio Jacobs from Cape town but resides in Joburg a fees must fall activist and he is also part of GALA, our bend Nkosazana and Brian Minor and the visual artist Gala Vanson. The set up was interesting, while we talked about our experiences and issues, live music was played and drawings were made by Gala to accompany what was said.
There were two shows, one in the morning with students from France and others from South Africa. Before we started I was asked to draw a sketch of my hood, the places I played growing up, the school etc.
The radiolive interview was more of a conversation amongst us while a crowd watched and I performed one of my single titled, LGBTI and I. I also shared a video of my mum and dad talking about their experiences during the Apartheid era. The fun part was that all the questions were not rehearsed and everything they combined from what we told them individually was beautiful almost as if we were there to help. After the first show we all went out for lunch and drinks, we started the second show a bit later than expected because a lot of people were stuck in traffic.
During the second show we had different questions than earlier on and not forgetting a stunt Caroline and Aurelie pulled on me by revealing pictures when I was still a cute baby, you should have seen my expression haha but I forgave them because it was a fine baby pictures of me. After the show I was all over the place networking and receiving praises from different people and I remember a lady that came up to me and gave me the longest hug and I could feel her tears in her voice and she said to me “Thank you for the healing you are giving the world”, this touched me deeply and made me realize the power of our stories when told by us.
I got myself Great opportunities and collaborations which will be announced early next year and I will carry on flying the Daveyton flag and representing each and every young person wanting to do something positive for the world from their own townships.