Marc Lottering shares lockdown truths at the Baxter with his new show
No more dancing to Jerusalema. It’s already caused two earthquakes in Cape Town.
That’s the plea Marc Lottering is making to the audience as he returns to the stage in his new show, Lottering on Lockdown.
The show is on until January 9 at the Baxter Theatre Centre.
For the Cape Town comedian, the live show is a welcome return to following the lockdown which resulted in him performing to an in-person audience of two.
“I’ve been looking forward to it because over this lockdown period, every time I did a show online I was basically performing to two camera people,” Lottering said. “I was really looking forward to experiencing a group of people, real people. Having said that, it’s a new terrain for everybody.”
But despite this, Lottering persisted and kept busy with his two online shows, My Fellow South Africans and Another One, as well as making online appearances alongside Cape Town Acoustic Element in June, and previewing his new show at the annual Suidoosterfees in Montague Gardens this month.
In September, he was awarded Best Male Lead Performance in a Musical at the annual Naledi Awards for his portrayal of Aunty Merle in his show Aunty Merle: It’s a Girl.
Lottering on Lockdown is exactly what the title suggests. During the 80-minute performance, Lottering explores everything from online education and meetings, to making sure the pantry is well stocked.
“Suddenly, people who have never gone to the gym in their lives, the moment the president says we can’t exercise, we all went crazy with exercise,” he said. “We talk about how we knew which places to go to get wine. Home schooling, which is everybody’s nightmare because up until now your children thought you were really clever.”
But it’s not all reminiscing as Lottering works to keep up to date with all the current issues facing South Africans.
“Because so much happens in this country, quite a large part of the show is brand new material, work that wasn’t done online,” he said.
“It’s chatting to people about the lockdown experience and how we approached it. We cover a broad range of topics, but my comedy has always been about the recognition factor. I try to tell stories which I hope audiences will recognise, having gone through the same stuff. That is a source of laughter from my audience.”
Lottering added as a result of the lockdown, he had learnt to not take in-person audiences for granted. “Even now when I’m being subjected to very intimate audiences, it’s a new experience, and looking back you realise how gold it was to have an audience in the room,” he said. “I’ve been going home every night and changing things up, fiddling with stories, taking stuff out and putting it back in.”
With the new show, Loitering has also been forced to rethink his performance strategy with calls being made for him not to abandon his work online.
“The big debate that’s been happening on my social media is from expats, who say they have grown accustomed to supporting me online now and they’ve had a taste of South Africa again,” he said. “Suddenly, they feel blocked out again because we’re not livestreaming the show. Even Joburgers are saying that. Then there are the locals who say they’re not ready to go back to the theatre yet. There’s a way now in the future where the two have to meet. I don’t think I have an option. We live in a different time now.”
Tickets to Lottering on Lockdown range from R100 to R150, and are available at the Baxter Theatre Centre and Webtickets.