WIN tickets to the Conductors of the Karoo Art event, plus a two night stay for two at Karoo Art Hotel

Posted on 29 February 2024 By Savanna Douglas

One lucky reader stands the chance to win a Two Night Stay for Two from 8-10 March at the Karoo Art Hotel, with free tickets to the anticipated Conductors of the Karoo Art event.

The Karoo Art Hotel in Barrydale welcomes all fellow art enthusiasts, literature lovers, and desert dwellers to make the journey across the region’s dusty roads from 8-10 March, for a three-day event merging the realms of dance, photography, music, and storytelling.

The program

The program includes a photography walk-through with renowned South African photographer Guy Tillim – whose photographs are found in the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Tate Modern in London.

A rare opportunity to see Rian Malan perform live, with songs from his album, Alien Inboorling, accompanied by his band, Was Daar – formerly known as Vermaaklikheid Bakkery Orkes. 

The event includes two movie and documentary screenings by South African power duo Lloyd Ross and the legendary Rian Malan, lauded by The Citizen for creating ‘the best South African film ever made’.

Plus, spend a morning with the international dance, movement and Yoga instructor, Hannah Loewenthal.


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The artists

Hannah Lowenthal is a grand master of the 5Rhythms school of dance and movement, a teacher whose classes are over-subscribed in locations as diverse as Oslo, New York and Vermaaklikheid. Vermaaklikheid? Well exactly. It’s a remote village where Guy and Hannah once baked and sold sourdough bread, hence the band’s original name, Vermaaklikheid Bakery Orchestra. Sadly, the bakery was killed by COVID lockdowns, whereupon the band became known as Was Daar, which is also the title of a faux swing tune by friend, author and musician, Rian Malan.

Rian Malan, the third business in this opera, was once indeed an author of note, best known for his My Traitor’s Heart. Malan lives in the lonely settlement of Van Wyksdorp, where the streets have no names and tarred roads are unknown. Van Wyksdorp has one restaurant only; in Vermaakliheid, there’s no nightlife at all. So when the sun sets our subjects drive enormous distances on bad roads for the pleasure of drinking, eating and playing obscure folk music together – American country western, Argentinian tango, local vastrap and JewGypsy tunes from long ago and far away.

Was Daar recently completed a pre-world tour of the likes of Barrydale, Stilbaai and even Merweville. They feel they are now ready for even greater things, including weddings, barmitzvahs and diplomatic cocktail parties.

Guy Tillim made his bones as a conflict photographer during The Struggle, in which he featured as a founder member of the activistic Afrapix collective. After 1994 he moved on to wars elsewhere, where he strung for the likes of Reuters and the New York Times. Somewhere along the line, gallerist Michael Stevenson decided that Tillim was an artist, rather than a news photographer. This came as a pleasant surprise to a man accustomed to risking his life for almost nothing. Next thing he’d become a star in the international art firmament. Freed at last from penury, Guy bought some good guitars and allied with the legendary Roger Bashew, who produced Wrongman, his critically acclaimed debut as a singer-songwriter.

The hotel

The Karoo Art Hotel, previously known as the Barrydale Karoo Hotel, is a quaint country hotel in the farming village of Barrydale boasting fifteen eclectic rooms, each with unique Karoo charm. Barrydale is a great escape for Western Cape wanderers, being just a 2,5 hour drive away from the Mother City. The artists’ inn aims to celebrate all forms of creativity blossoming across the Karoo desert. The space exhibits not only painting, drawing and sculpture, but music, written work and design. Noteworthy artists who have featured at the hotel include Laresa Perlman, Andrew Hofmeyr and Maggie Smit.

WIN tickets to the Conductors of the Karoo Art event, plus a two night stay for two

One lucky reader stands the chance to WIN a Two Night Stay for Two from 8-10 March at the Karoo Art Hotel. The prize includes access to all the events taking place over the weekend – including tickets to the Conductors of the Karoo Art event.

To enter name TWO of the Conductors of the Karoo Art will be in attendance on the weekend.

Simply Whatsapp your answer, with the word ‘Getaway’ to 066 189 7457.

Winners will be announced by The Karoo Art Hotel on social media on March 5 at noon.

Offer excludes meals, Tcs & Cs apply.

Find out more via the Karoo Art Hotel’s website, and book your tickets for the event here.

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