Growing our Next Generation of Theatre Stars at Suidoosterfees

During the past weekend, youth drama groups from the Eden and Cape Winelands areas had the chance to perform at the Artscape theatre as part of the Suidoosterfees.

Eden Cape Winelands Drama Participants  at the Suidoosterfees
Eden Cape Winelands Drama Participants at the Suidoosterfees

The Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport (DCAS) organised the Eden/Cape Winelands drama festivals during 2014 to identify and develop new talent. In March this year, the winners and runners-up of these festivals had the opportunity to perform at the Baxter theatre as part of the Zabalaza festival. During the Suidoosterfees these finalists presented their winning production in an attempt to be crowned with the best production from their respective rural districts.

The participating groups that competed for the title as the best drama group on Friday the 1st May were  Vangnet from Bonnievale with their show “Afvlerk”, Team Bring It from Worcester with their production “Unlocked Cages”,  Hessequa HLC from Heidelberg with “ It’s my Freedom not Mandela’s” and New Age Production from George with their production “Blomme vir Oulaas”.

The event was adjudicated by Mr Rufus Swart (Head Lecturer for Drama from Stellenbosch University) and Mr Thami Mbongo (Artistic Director: Zabalaza Festival, Baxter).

Director for Arts, Culture and Language Services Jane Moleleki presented the awards to the following youth:

Sheline Bothma: Best Script,

William Micheals: Best Director,

Philida Manzi :Best Actress,

Bradley De Koker: Best Actor, and

Winning Production: Team Bring It (Worcester).

The University of Stellenbosch also presented a prize (Short Course) for two exceptional youth in applied theatre. Sheline Bothma and Jemina Kleinbooi (only Female Writer and Director during the festival) were awarded with this prize and they will receive further training to plough back into their local community in Bonnievale.

All of these productions were developed through a departmental programme, which saw these young actors receive professional skills training in script writing, directing and character training, as well as production development from theatre professionals.

Western Cape Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Anroux Marais, said she was very pleased with the winners. “I hope to meet and congratulate the winners soon. They have worked very hard for this accolade and certainly deserve the acknowledgement for their work. The Department offers numerous similar opportunities for people with potential.”

DCAS offers communities the opportunities to showcase and hone their artistic skills. Let us create a province of artistic excellence BETTER TOGETHER.

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