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5 theatre shows to look out for in Cape Town this Human Rights Month

Mbulelo Grootboom, Wessel Pretorius in ‘Kiss of the Spider Woman’. Picture: Fiona McPherson

Mbulelo Grootboom, Wessel Pretorius in ‘Kiss of the Spider Woman’. Picture: Fiona McPherson

Published Mar 19, 2022


This March, theatre shows across the Mother City will feature works of diverse artists, writers and many other creatives in commemoration of Human Rights Month.

We have compiled a list of shows to enjoy in Cape Town this month.

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Kiss of the Spider Woman

Directed by Sylvaine Strike, Manuel Puig’s hit classic, “Kiss of the Spider Woman” explores issues of love, identity and sexuality.

The production sees Mbulelo Grootboom play the character of Valentin while Wessel Pretorius brings to life the character of Molina in this journey of self-awareness, intrigue, romance, revolution, love and betrayal.

The story centres around two cell mates who pass their time in a prison, by remembering and reinventing the classics of the silver screen.

What at first seems to be a simple and straightforward, if not casual story of two people who appear to be opposites (the romantic and the revolutionary), instead reveals a story of political intrigue and double-crossing.

‘Kiss of the Spider Woman’ is staging at The Baxter, till March 26.

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“Firefly” sees another magical collaboration when South Africa’s theatre giants, Andrew Buckland and Sylvaine Strike star in this new enchanting production.

Directed by Toni Morkel, ‘Firefly’ is an unforgettable journey into the underbelly of wonder, in all its awful splendour – is a passionate tale of moon-crossed love, betrayal, revenge and desire.

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The exceptional clowning duo, who deliver performances that will move, thrill and delight audiences, are accompanied live by Tony Bentel on piano and who is responsible for the musical arrangements and some original music.

“Firefly” is set to showcase at the Baxter from March 24 and runs till April 9.

Contested Bodies

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Artscape is hosting the world premiere of the drama ‘Contested Bodies’ by Abrahamse and Meyer Productions from March 16 till April 2.

The flinging of human excrement by political activists, Chumani Maxwele, at the statue of British Imperialist, Cecil John Rhodes on March 9, 2015, became a watershed moment in how South Africans respond and relate to the trauma of our colonial past.

In their “outrage for the stage” Abrahamse and Meyer do some faeces flinging of their own in an outrageous entertainment fashion that is likely to be the most controversial and contested play of the year.

This production is strictly for adults only as it contains scenes with strong language, partial male nudity, violence, prejudice, and simulated sex.

Die Poet: Wie’s Hy

Artscape is celebrating the life and legacy of legendary poet and Black Consciousness Movement activist Adam Small in a new production “Die Poet: Wie’s Hy”.

Directed by Frieda van den Heever and interpreted by Dean Balie and the Khoisan Gypsy Band, the production is based and inspired by Small’s illustrious works throughout the years.

As a young intellectual Small strongly advocated the use of one’s voice. It was this medium that he used to denounce various human rights abuses under the apartheid government.

He was noted as a coloured writer who wrote works in Afrikaans that dealt with racial discrimination and satirised the political situation.

His notable work “Kanna hy kô Hystoe” which premiered at the then Nico Malan (now Artscape) in 1974 was barred based on the colour of his skin.

“Die Poet: Wie’s Hy” opens on March 16 and runs till March 19.

The Last Five Years

The Award-winning musical “The Last Five Years” is set to make hit the Theatre on the Bay stages this March.

“The Last Five Years” is a one-act drama-comedy telling the bittersweet love story of Catherine Hiatt, a struggling actress, and Jamie Wellerstein, an up-and-coming novelist. This old story of love-found and love-lost is told in a fresh and new manner.

Cathy reflects on their relationship from the end to the first meeting, whilst Jamie moves chronologically. They meet only once, in the middle of the show.

This musical stars Anthony Downing and Zoe McLaughlin, and a live six-piece band.

‘The Last Five Years’ will be running at Theatre on the bay from March 29 to April 9.

Related Topics:

Cape TownTheatre