An action-packed, talent driven October at UJ Arts & Culture

This October, audiences are spoilt for choice with UJ Arts & Culture’s line-up of events. A division of the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture, the department presents a broad range of arts and culture events with something for everyone.

“October marks the beginning of the end of our 2019 iteration of the #YourHeART programme of passion. And what better way to journey into the festive season than with mystery and inspiration and celebrations of 2019 successes,” says Head of UJ Arts & Culture, Pieter Jacobs.

Let the Right One In, an enchanting, brutal vampire myth and coming-of-age love story adapted from best-selling Swedish novel and award-winning film by John Ajvide Lindqvist, which was adapted for stage by Jack Thorne, will have its South African premiere at the University of Johannesburg this October. The production, presented with a hybrid cast of professionals and UJ students, is the culmination of the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture (FADA) and UJ Arts & Culture’s annual inter-disciplinary theatre project. This flagship challenges around 300 students to design various aspects of a play. The development run of Let the Right One In be presented from 25 – 26 October 2019, at the Arts Centre Theatre on the University of Johannesburg’s Kingsway Campus.

The Gallery of the University of Johannesburg is hosting Conversing the Land, an exhibition of landscapes from the permanent art collections of MTN and the University of Johannesburg, as well as selected landscapes from the joint MTN and UJ Emerging Artists Development Programme.

The exhibition opens on 22 October and is curated by Katlego Lefine, from MTN, and Annali Dempsey, curator of the UJ Art Gallery.

With an exploration of the South African landscape as shaped by the memories, myths and meanings, the inclusion of works by artists participating in the Emerging Artists Development Programme adds fresh energy to the work contained in two permanent collections. These landscapes allow the viewer not only a glimpse into current approaches to landscape but also the issues explored by a new generation of artists.

The Emerging Artists Development Programme invited artists through public advertising to submit an artwork in response to, or in conversation with, modern and contemporary South African landscapes, thereby offering a platform to showcase talents and interpretations of contemporary South African land issues.

On the 25th October 2019 at 19:30 UJ Choir, under the auspices of UJ Arts & Culture celebrate the close of a joyful and successful year at St. Michael and All Angels’ Anglican Church, Weltevreden Park. Under the excellent leadership of renowned conductors, Renette Bouwer and Sizwe Mondlane, UJ Choir will present their most varied experimental repertoire yet centered around the beauty of the sights and sounds of nature.

From the 23 – 26 October UJ Arts & Culture revels in the power of poetry with the annual Izimbongi Poetry Festival taking place at the UJ Con Cowan Theatre on the Bunting Road campus. While Izimbongi means “the people who perform praise poetry”, the festival itself is truly an act of praising poetry and gives students and members of the public an opportunity to be inspired by the wide breadth of expression poetry offers, as well as a chance to engage with the UJ Arts Academy rising young stars and professional poets and performers.

For more information and to book tickets, go to or contact Lakin Morgan-Baatjies at


UJ Arts & Culture, a division of the Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture (FADA) produces and presents world-class student and professional arts programmes aligned to the UJ vision of an international university of choice, anchored in Africa, dynamically shaping the future. A robust range of arts platforms are offered on all four UJ campuses for students, staff, alumni and the general public to experience and engage with emerging and established Pan-African and international artists drawn from the full spectrum of the arts.

In addition to UJ Arts & Culture, FADA ( offers programmes in eight creative disciplines, in Art, Design and Architecture, as well as playing home to the NRF SARChI Chair in South African Art & Visual Culture, and the Visual Identities in Art & Design Research Centre. The Faculty has a strong focus on sustainability and relevance, and engages actively with the dynamism, creativity and diversity of Johannesburg in imagining new approaches to art and design education.