Posts Tagged ‘jennifer steyn’

Nat Ramabulana and Janna Ramos Violante perform in The Imagined Land at Vicky’s, Grahamstown, 10 July 2015, at the 2015 National Arts Festival. The Imagined Land is a new play by acclaimed writer Craig Higginson in which a famous Zimbabwean novelist, modelled on Nadine Gordimer and Doris Lessing, is confronted by her biographer with difficult memories from her past. Photo: CuePix / Jane Berg.

The National Arts Festival pretty much reflects the theatre scene as a whole. There is still not enough black theatre, and there are not enough black audience members. It’s largely a matter of economics but it’s also related to artistic will.

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Christian Olwagen’s production of Ibsen’s enduring drama, A Doll’s House, is driven by a clear directorial vision and performed by a powerful cast.

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I have a long history with writer’s block, in fact you could say it’s a pedigree. Mike van Graan doesn’t, though, judging from the number of his plays on this Festival. This year the National Arts Festival created a new accolade and teamed up with Artscape Theatre to name van Graan 2013 Festival Playwright. Four of his plays are being performed on the Main, including the premiere yesterday of Writer’s Block. About half way through I was beginning to wish he had it.

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