Wêreld’s jam-packed line-up at Urban Sessions was a great reflection of their collective ethos as a platform

I attended my first Wêreld show back in 2015 and instantly became a fan and follower of their work because I was intrigued by how different it was from anything else I’d seen. And by “different” I mean different good, in the best and most creative way possible.

The Wêreld collective describes themselves as a multidisciplinary platform for creative people and projects to cross-pollinate, flourish, and to connect with a specific audience in search of portals to more meaningful artistic experiences – and I can confirm that this is the absolute truth.

The collective, founded by Jaco van der Merwe of Bittereinder, has grown from strength to strength over the last 5 years and have become a platform for, in their own words, “innovative, experimental audiovisual artists to create and share their music and visuals to a connected audience”. A mouthful, yes, but if you’ve been lucky enough to see, or rather, experience a Wêreld show you will know exactly what that means.

During lockdown I’ve had the privilege of attending quite a few live streams from the amazing Urban Sessions studios in Johannesburg, so I kinda knew what to expect when I arrived there on Sunday. Except this time I didn’t, and everything was different. The stage was literally smoke, props and mirrors, and instead of the usual set up everything was turned inwards. The artists were set up to perform at each other, for each other and with each other, with even the camera operators becoming a part of the performance.

What followed was more than an hour of otherworldly music and visuals that I will never forget. We were taken on a transcendental journey by all the performances, from Ronald Davey, Imke and Ricky, Cynthesizer and Mr_Alden, to an amazing 5-song set by Half-Sister, culminating in a drone/ambient set by Louwrens Ferreira which was the perfect ending to a perfect night.

For everyone who missed the live stream you’re in luck, the band have made it available on Video On Demand and tickets are R40 a pop which you can purchase here.