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Soli Philander gets serious with poetry and reflects on life

Media personality Soli Philander showcased his poetry at the Artscape Theatre on Saturday (July 2). Picture: Shakirah Thebus/Cape Argus

Media personality Soli Philander showcased his poetry at the Artscape Theatre on Saturday (July 2). Picture: Shakirah Thebus/Cape Argus

Published Jul 5, 2022

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Cape Town - Known for his larger-than-life demeanour, theatrics and humour, media personality Soli Philander’s poetry shows another side, with gripping works evoking a keen sense of poignancy and thought over the human condition.

On Saturday, Philander formally showcased his poetry in a production titled Therapy at the Artscape. The show will run every Saturday in July.

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Describing himself as an indigenous creative person, Philander said he had been writing poetry since the age of 6 or 7.

“I still have little rympies (rhymes) that I wrote from back then. My mother’s house is inundated with boxes and stuff that I have written. I also have lots where I stay. I remember when I was at school, I used to make money from selling little poems, and friends always asked me to write little love notes for their girlfriends,” he said.

During Women’s Month, Philander wants to showcase works written about veteran actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards, and focus on gender-based violence and home insecurity/homelessness.

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“I go back to the poems I wrote then and I look at them and think I could have written this now, and see the issues are the same and it is about quality of existence, quality of engagement, relationships, condition of the world,” he said.

A friend and colleague of Philander’s, Sharon van Schoor, said some of the funds would be used to head food provision projects undertaken by the two. Van Schoor is part of the Soli Philander foundation and #SpringfieldMatters campaign.

“We do community upliftment, we do little events for our community, we feed our homeless people. We assist people who are struggling because of Covid-19 and because of fires, and we sort out clothing, ingredients for them to make a pot of food, whatever we can get from family and friends, and take it to whoever the recipients are,” she said.

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On who should be filling theatre seats, Van Schoor said: “Our indigenous people, because his poetry is all about us.”

To book, contact Van Schoor on 064 143 8385.

[email protected]

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