The nominees for the prestigious 55th Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards have been unveiled.
Now, the countdown begins to the gala awards function on 22 March when the winners in this performing arts calendar highlight will be announced. The showcase is to be hosted at The Baxter Theatre in Cape Town.
Established in 1965, the annual awards known as South Africa’s leading performing arts competition, focuses on professional theatre productions staged in Cape Town and environs. It is sponsored by Distell and has served as launching pad for many of the country’s most prominent names in theatre, while honouring many of its most established talents.
Congratulating the latest nominees, newly appointed judging panel chairperson Africa Melane says the standard of entries remains world-class. “Each year we’re faced with a very difficult task of having to select from an exceptional, high-quality line-up. Once again, the nominees have set the bar high.
“Well done to everyone and thank you to my fellow judges for their time, dedication and passion.”
A total of 59 productions are in the running for top honours this year.
Listed alphabetically, they are:
(W)asem, #HETWO, 3 Susters, 4 Love, An Extraordinarily Ordinary Life, Anthology: Clean Break, Antigone (Not Quite/Quiet), Aunty Merle: It’s a Girl!, Benny Bushwacker, Blueberry Toast, Cellist With Rabies, Cenotaph of Dan wa Moriri, Chicago The Musical, Confessions of a Mormon Boy, Danger in the Dark, DEURnis, Die 9de Maand, Dirty Words, Equus, Every Year, Every Day, I’m Walking, Family Secrets, Five Women Wearing the Same Dress, Florence and Wine in the Wilderness, Forever Plaid, G7: Okwe Bokhwe (Like/Of a goat), Happy New Year (A Play with Songs), Into the Woods, Kamphoer, Kinky Boots, Klippies van die Grond, Koningin Lear, Krotoa: Eva van die Kaap, Kunene and the King, Macbeth, Nocturne, Offbeat Broadway 5, Ordinary Days, Richard III, Scott, Sê my naam soos ‘n Starbucks knaap, Silkworm, Statements After an Arrest Under the Immorality Act, Still, Tales from the Garden, The Epicene Butcher and Other Stories for Consenting Adults, The Glass Menagerie, The Goat, or Who is Sylvia, The Gospel According to Jan Coetzee, The Hucksters, The Old Man and the Sea, The One Who Sings, The Rocky Horror Show, The Room, Ukuwa Kwe Nkaba, Van Wyk: The Storyteller of Riverlea, Vaslav, Winging It! The Turbulent Revelations of Meghan and Shivan, Woza Albert and Zombie Attack.
The panel assessing the productions comprised long-serving members as well as newcomers – all respected experts in their fields unified by unique perspective of the performing arts. Along with Africa Melane as chairperson, they include Dr Beverley Brommert, Maurice Carpede, Marina Griebenow, Thabo Makgolo, Mariana Malan, Roxy Marosa, Dr Wayne Muller, Tracey Saunders, Lwando Scott and Hadley Tituss.
Come the night of the final announcement, the awards will be presented in 24 categories. This will also be when the accolades to acknowledge stand-out innovation in theatre and lifetime achievement will revealed.
The categories are:
- Best new South African script; and, Best new director
- Best theatre production for children and young people
- Best performance by an ensemble; in a revue, cabaret or one-person show; by a supporting actor in a musical or music theatre show; by a supporting actress in a musical or music theatre show; by a lead actor in a musical or music theatre show; and, by a lead actress in a musical or music theatre show
- Best puppetry design; Best lighting design; Best set design; Best costume design; and, Best sound design, original music, soundscape or live performance
- Best performance in an opera – male; and, female
- Best performance by a supporting actor in a play; supporting actress in a play; lead actress in a play; lead actor in a play
- Best director
- Best production
- Award for innovation in theatre
- Lifetime achievement award
- Award for most promising student
In tracking upcoming talent, the panel watched more than 35 student performances during the year. It reported the standard at the tertiary institutions has shown tremendous growth and that the trajectory of some students directly to the professional stage is testament to that.
The institutions are ACT Cape Town, AFDA, City Varsity, CTDPS The Centre for Theatre, Dance & Performance Studies at UCT, LAMTA (Luitingh Alexander Musical Theatre Academy), Magnet Theatre, Northlink College, Stellenbosch University Department of Drama and Waterfront Theatre School.
The event breaks from tradition this year in that public tickets for the event, to be held at the Baxter Theatre in Cape Town on 22 March, will not be available. Rather, the awards ceremony may be followed via the Fleur du Cap YouTube channel.
“Distell is a proud supporter of the arts. It has sponsored the Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards for more than five decades,” says Bridgitte Backman, Distell’s Director of Corporate and Regulatory Affairs. “This year marks the start of a new decade and judging from the standard of nominees, an exciting one for the performing arts in South Africa. Congratulations!”
The 55th Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards are audited by The Finance Man, with legal services provided by Cluver Makotter.
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