Arts fest magic continues countrywide
Theatre lovers who could not experience the "amaz!ng" vibe at South Africa's National Arts Festival in July can get a taste of the Grahamstown magic at various theatres across the country over the next few months.
Mike van Graan's hard-hitting Aids drama "Iago's Last Dance", directed by Lara Bye, will be running at the Artscape Arena Theatre in Cape Town from 11 to 22 August.
Justin Wilkinson's hilarious comedy "Buttler's and Botox", a sell-out at Grahamstown's Festival Fringe comedy programme, will be on at the Artscape from 25 to 29 August.
Still in Cape Town, the Baxter Theatre will host sell-out comedian David Newton with his popular Grahamstown tribute, "Best of the Fest", from 20 to 22 August. Newton brought three different comedy shows to the Festival this year, with sold-out performances across the board. Apart from his own one-man shows, he produced, directed and co-wrote "Dekaf" with upcoming comedian and actor Sivuyile "Siv" Ngesi, who will be the opening act of "Best of the Fest".
Jeremy Crutchley's 40 characters, all played by him, are currently appearing on the Baxter stage in another National Arts Festival hit, "I am my own wife", written by Doug Wright and directed by Janice Honeyman. The season has been extended to 15 August due to public demand.
The Baxter will also see Festival veterans Liz and Nicholas Ellenbogen back in action with the evergreen "A Midsummer Night's Raiders" from 19 August to 5 September. The Ellenbogens celebrated 20 years of Raider's with sold-out performances at this years Festival.
Gauteng province won't be missing out either, with Standard Bank Young Artist Award winner Ntshieng Mokgoro's "The Olive Tree" running at the State Theatre in Pretoria from 4 to 23 August.
The State Theatre will also be hosting Festival Fringe production "The Report to an Academy", written by Franz Kafka, directed by Karoly Pinter with Sello Maake ka Ncube, from 4 September to 4 October.
Ben Voss, directed by Janice Honeyman, can also be seen in Festival Fringe comedy favorite "Beauty and the BEE" at the State Theatre from 6 to 25 October.
The Market Theatre in Johannesburg is also hosting two productions from the Festival's main programme, as well as one of the Fringe favorites. Fred Khumalo's "Touch my Blood", adapted for the stage and directed by James Ngcobo, runs until 23 August, alongside Theatre Tallipot's spectacular dance creation "Ma Ravan". Ma Ravan will also be at the State Theatre in Pretoria from 27 to 29 August as part of the Capital Arts Festival.
Utlwanang Theatre's political satire Mr Flatnose runs at the Market until 16 of August.
South African funny-man-turned-dance-sensation Rob van Vuuren, who starred as himself in "Rob van Vuuren is Rob van Wurin" at the Festival, will be entertaining audiences at the Joburg Theatre Complex from 11 to 22 August.
The Wits Downstairs Theatre hosts "Lozenge, the suppression of pain" until 8 August. This physical theatre production is directed by Kieron Jina, and was the official Wits School of Arts entry to the National Arts Festival in 2009.
The Wits Amphitheatre also welcomes Atandwa Kani and Nat Ramabulana from 5 to 22 August, with "ID Pending" and "Hayani", directed by Warren Nebe. This is presented by The Company Laboratory, a professional company for Wits graduates hosted by Wits Dramatic Arts, in collaboration with the Wits Transformation office and the Carnegie Corporation.
Other Fringe highlights travelling the country include Iain "Ewok" Robinson's stand-up show "Spitfire", playing at the Kearsney College Auditorium on 15 August, and songstress Nianell performing in Durban on 20 August.
Festival hit The Parlotones will be performing in Howick on 1 August.
Popular Festival duo, opera sensation Zanne Stapelberg and classical guitarist James Grace, who brought "Canciones Espanolas" to Grahamstown, will both be performing at the Klein Karoo Klassique Festival, running from 14 to 16 August in Oudsthoorn.
"Canciones Espanolos" will also return to the stage at the Aardklop Festival in Potchefstroom on 3 October.
"The Famished Road", based on the award-winning novel and writings of Ben Okri and directed by Helen Iskander, will form part of the Aardklop programme in Potchefstroom from 1 to 3 October.
The National Arts Festival is sponsored by Standard Bank, The Eastern Cape Government, The National Arts Council, The National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund, The Sunday Independent and M-Net.
Source: National Arts Festival