Dance academy for disadvantaged youth grows in leaps and bounds

Indoni Dance Academy co-founder Sbonakaliso Ndaba is using dance to uplift local and disadvantaged youth.

The KwaZulu-Natal-born dancer co-founded Phenduka Dance Theatre in Durban and is now making a difference in the lives of young Cape Town dance enthusiasts.

She trained at JazzArt, then learned to choreographed dance before developing her own African contemporary technique.

Read: How Jazzart and artistic director Sifiso Kweyama are keeping dance alive

The award-winning dancer says she had to cut short her dance career in Johannesburg to return to Cape Town to give back to the community.

In 2014, the dance company started with five students and now the full-time training academy has a cohort of 27 students.

The love of dance was something that I was born with.

Sbonakaliso Ndaba, Artistic Director and choreographer at Indoni Dance Academy

I used to dance in my mom's kitchen.

Sbonakaliso Ndaba, Artistic Director and choreographer at Indoni Dance Academy

I can do nothing without moving my body around a space.

Sbonakaliso Ndaba, Artistic Director and choreographer at Indoni Dance Academy

It worried me that the kids were sitting at home doing nothing.

Sbonakaliso Ndaba, Artistic Director and choreographer at Indoni Dance Academy

The most important thing for me is working with people who come backgrounds like Khayelitsha and people who don't have much.

Sbonakaliso Ndaba, Artistic Director and choreographer at Indoni Dance Academy

We were forced to open a dance academy because after the third year my students didn't want to leave.

Sbonakaliso Ndaba, Artistic Director and choreographer at Indoni Dance Academy

In 2016, Ndaba was the winner of the Western Cape Cultural Affairs Award for ‘Best Contribution to Performing Arts: Dance’ and in 2017 for ‘Outstanding Achievement of Youth in Arts and Culture’.

She described where here love of dance began and her involvement in community outreach to uplift the youth through dance.

Take a listen to the inspiring story of Indoni Dance Academy:


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