TOME (Extracts)

Extracts from our performance of TOME at the 2015 Pur Pur Festival of Transgressive Arts, Youngblood Gallery, Cape Town. Created and performed by Coila-Leah Enderstein and Nicola van Straaten.

Closet (Extracts)

After swapping wardrobes for two weeks, Kopano Maroga and Nicola van Straaten continue this thought-experiment around clothing through a structured improvisational performance into their wardrobes and the seemingly superfluous garments that construct so much of our reality.

Extracts from performance of ‘Closet’ at Gallery Momo, Cape Town.

Created by: Kopano Maroga & Nicola van Straaten
Filmed by: Coila-Leah Enderstein
Edited by: Nicola van Straaten

Rhythm Study

A few months ago, I improvised a short section of movement, playing with the idea of a soundscape through the scraping and jumping of feet on concrete.

A few months later, colleague and collaborator pianist Coila-Leah Enderstein watched the footage and took this idea of a soundscape further by creating a piano score in response to the footage. Using prepared piano to add texture and layer, she responding musically to a visual rhythm.

Through collaborative play and dialogue, we were left with a short film as the product of our experimental curiosity and craft.

Genesis 2.7

Having always been deeply influenced by text and movement, my childhood was largely dominated by two founding features – the Bible and Ballet. I have since then pursued a path of reflection, reaction and re-discovery. I have recently embarked on a choreographic project of looking at each body part mentioned in the Bible. This short film is a small manifestation of thoughts around the first body part mentioned in the Bible, oddly enough – the nostril. Considering breath, the inhale and the exhale, the films seeks to look at (however abstractly) the idea of two opposing features that define each other within a whole.

Music by Sebastian Borckenhagen (
Performed and edited by Nicola van Straaten (

Screened at:

Tanzrauschen International Dance on Screen Festival, Wuppertal, Germany (2016)
Teatro Martins Gonçalvez, in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil (2016)
AiM – Africa in Motion at the Dance Base, Edinburgh Scotland (2016)

Taboo You

‘Taboo You” is my very short film that made it into the Finnish Jury’s top ten in the online 60 Seconds Film Competition. It consists of images from three years ago when I scanned my body using a small personal scanner into my laptop.

Music: Arthur Lyman “Taboo Tu”


Some friends and I made our way to an abandoned warehouse in Windhoek, Namibia. I then read aloud to each of them, some words and they responded with only movement. The plan was to enable choreography or movement through text that could be interpreted, followed directly, ignored etc. A poetic and ambiguous form of verbal instruction was to be the soundtrack that would prompt motion.

This is the result of the process. Each respective verbal score has been edited in, the presence of the text surrounding the mover adds to the motion and meaning of the piece.

Hand Duet

The film was conceived, filmed and edited by Helen Harris and Nicola van Straaten of the Future Was Great Arts Collective.

A reference to Yvonne Rainer’s 1966 film, ‘Hand Movie’, we projected the film and tried to mimic, in one take, her movements. Succeeding and not succeeding, the shadowed outline is sometimes in sync with her choreography and sometimes not. In this broken attempt, we mirror a learning process that is filtered by medium, time and process.