The AFDA Graduation Festival 2023 – Showcasing the future leaders of the Creative Economy

Nov 10, 2023 | Film School, News, School of Business & Innovation, School of Creative Writing, School of Live Performance

AFDA is proud to announce that the annual AFDA Graduation Festival showcasing work from our final year Undergraduate and Postgraduate degree students will kick-off from the 17-26 November 2023. The festival will be hosted by AFDA in cinemas, theatres and studio venues in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Gqeberha.

This years festival will showcase a record 111 productions and projects from the respective AFDA campuses. These include live action short films, animation films, documentary films, telenovela pilots, theatre plays, live music performance shows and business innovation projects. This year also sees our genesis group of Creative Writing students pitch their creative writing projects to industry experts and the public at the festival, these include 6 short stories, 2 screenplays and a stage production.

“The annual AFDA Graduation Festival is an important platform for our final year Undergraduate and Postgraduate students to showcase the final practical outcome of their qualification. This outcome is the culmination of their learning journey at AFDA and finding their voice as young creatives. The content the AFDA graduates create is culturally relevant and engaging content for their chosen target markets. Many meaningful industry collaborations and connections have resulted from our Graduation Festival in previous years, creating opportunities for AFDA students as well as industry and media stakeholders alike.” says AFDA CEO Teresa Passchier.

“With the AFDA Graduation Festival coming up, the Johannesburg writers have been pretty stoked to share their work, which was more than evident in the table readings. Everyone is trying something a little different, pushing their boundaries and breaking out of their comfort zones. And I think it’s been a great success so far, things are really coming together in a lot of the writing we’ve seen.

We are equally excited and apprehensive about the festival day itself, this will be our first time pitching to industry people. Some of us are already finding internships and job opportunities. I think we’re all really just trying to get the ball rolling for our final push at AFDA.” says 3rd year Creative Writing student Kaival Pather.

At the AFDA Johannesburg Graduation Festival on 25th of November at 12:45 pm at Cinema Nouveau in Rosebank, AFDA’s first Artist in Residency, Vusi Africa, known for his award winning films “Letters of Hope” and “Surviving Gaza”, is previewing his AFDA MFA documentary film “Happy”. The film takes us on journey through history as we revisit an event that unfolded 20 years ago when Happy Sindane took a brave step to Bronkhorstspruit Police Station, laying charges of kidnapping against the Sindane’s. The film has also already been selected as the closing film for the Africa Rising International Film Festival.

All the productions and projects at the festival are assessed by industry professionals, AFDA learning staff members and most importantly, the public. The graduation production constitutes 50% of the complete student assessment for the year. This is a critical aspect of the AFDA learning system which encourages students to create market related and culturally relevant entertainment content.

AFDA graduation productions have been hugely successful both locally and abroad on the local and international film festival circuit. These include the film ‘Elalini’ which won the Best Foreign Student Film Oscar in 2006, ’Kanye Kanye’ which won over 20 best short film awards worldwide, and was a finalist for the Oscars and Cannes in 2012. The films ‘Die Windpomp’ and ‘Hollywood in my Huis’ were AFDA student films which were later developed into feature films. AFDA student films have also won 9 SAFTA’s in the “Best Student Film” category.

The AFDA students and staff body are looking forward to seeing you give round of applause from the edge of your seat.

AFDA Johannesburg Graduation Festival 2023 – 17 to 26 November

  • Undergraduate Creative Writing – Story Concept Pitches: 25 Nov in L1 Lecture Hall, Main Campus. (10h00-12h30)
  • Undergraduate Business Innovation & Entrepreneurship – Business Launches: 17 & 18 Nov in L2 Theatre, Main Campus. (09h00-17h00)
  • Undergraduate Business Innovation & Entrepreneurship – Shareholders Presentation: 23 NOV. (09h00-17h00)
  • Undergraduate Live Performance – Stage Performance & Media Presenting: 17 to 19 NOV in the Red Roof Theatre, Main Campus. (12h00-19h00)
  • Undergraduate Live Performance – Music Album Launches: 25 to 26 Nov Red Roof Theatre, Main Campus. (09h00-19h00)
  • Undergraduate Motion Picture TV – Telenovela: 25 Nov at Cinema Nouveau, Rosebank JHB. (09h00-23h00)
  • Undergraduate Motion Picture Film –  Short Film: 25 Nov at Cinema Nouveau, Rosebank JHB. (09h00-23h00)
  • Postgraduate Motion Picture (Hons & MFA) – Film & Documentary: 25 Nov at Cinema Nouveau, Rosebank JHB. (09h00-23h00)
  • Postgraduate Live Performance (Hons) – Stage Play: 17 to 19 Nov in the Red Roof Theatre, Main Campus. (12h00-19h00)
  • Postgraduate Live Performance – Music Performance: 23 Nov Grattitude Restaurant, Modderfontein.

AFDA Cape Town Graduation Festival 2023 – 17 to 25 November

  • Undergraduate Business Innovation & Entrepreneurship – Cine Studio on campus 17 Nov (10am)
  • Undergraduate & Postgraduate Live Performance – AFDA Theatre, 221 on Lower Main 19 Nov (2pm), 20 Nov (6pm), 21 Nov 6pm
  • Undergraduate Music Performance- Cine Studio 17 (6pm)-18 Nov (5pm)
  • Undergraduate & Postgraduate Motion Picture Film & TV –  The Labia 24-25 Nov (10am-8pm)

AFDA Durban Graduation Festival 2023 – 23 to 25 November

  • Undergraduate & Postgraduate Live Performance – 23 Nov The Playhouse
  • Undergraduate & Postgraduate Motion Picture Film & TV – 25 Nov

AFDA Gqeberha Graduation Festival 2023 – 21-22 and 25 November

  • Undergraduate Live Performance 21 Nov – Preview
  • Undergraduate Live Performance 22 Nov, The Savoy Theatre, Diaz Rd & Stirk St, Parsons Hill
  • Undergraduate & Postgraduate Motion Picture Film – 25 Nov Nu Metro Cinema, Summerstrand Boardwalk, 2nd Ave, Summerstrand



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