Gina Shmukler has been in the entertainment industry since she was six years old. In her career, her theatre work as an actress, director and producer, has garnered ten theatre nominations and four awards across different genres ranging from Mamma Mia and Chess, to Master Class and Silk Ties. In 2013, after completing her Master’s Degree in Drama at the University of Witwatersrand, Gina was the proud recipient of the Dr Sibongile Khumalo Creative Research Award. Her select directorial credits include; The Line, Lost in the Stars, Songs for a New World, The Market Theatre’s Brer Rabbit, Beautiful Creatures, Love: A Musical Revue, The Last Five Years and The Whole Megillah. Having taken a performance hiatus, Gina returned to the stage in 2017 in Mike van Graan’s Helen of Troyeville. At the end of 2018, she returned to her musical theatre roots by stepping into Aunty Merle the Musical, which makes its way to Joburg Theatre following three sold-out engagements in Cape Town.
Bethany Dickson is a Naledi and Fleur du Cap Theatre Award nominated actress. For more than a decade, Bethany has been charming South African and international audiences by tackling some of musical theatres most iconic roles. After making her debut in High School Musical, she has since gone on to perform in Singin’ in the Rain, Sunset Boulevard, The Sound of Music and Grease. We sat down with her to chat about her latest role, portraying Miss Honey in the musical adaptation of Roald Dahl’s beloved classic, Matilda.
Jenny Stead is an actress currently starring as Judy Boone in the South African premiere of the West End and Broadway hit, The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-Time. After graduating from the University of Stellenbosch, she won the Vita award for Best New Actress for her performance in Fiona Coyne’s Glass Roots. Jenny won a Fleur du Cap for her performance in Reza de Wet’s Breathing In, followed by a tour through the USA and Europe with the New York Colonnade’s production of the politically charged, Truth In Translation. She was nominated for a Fleur du Cap for Best Actress in A Musical for her portrayal of Janet in The Fugard Theatre’s production of The Rocky Horror Show. Her fourth Fleur du Cap Nomination was for The Visit in 2018. Her film and television credits include The Poseidon Adventure, Starship Troopers 3, Restless, ICE and Blood Drive. Continue reading
Claire Taylor is an actor, singer, dancer and voice artist. Her select credits include West Side Story, Rock of Ages (Naledi nomination), Dirty Dancing, Sunset Boulevard and Cabaret, for which she was nominated for a Fleur du Cap Theatre Award. She has worked in theatres and countries all over the world including Australia, Italy, China and the USA. She has also featured on various local and international voice campaigns. Claire is the founder and director of a promotional and events staffing agency, and experiential entertainment company, Promotiv, which she launched in January 2018. She is currently starring as Mrs Wormwood in the South African premiere of Matilda. Continue reading
Leila Henriques is an actor, writer, director and teacher. As an actress, she has starred in more than 30 productions. Some of her select stage credits include: Hedda Gabler, The Something Prince, Yerma, Red Shoes and The List. She has taught acting at various academic institutions across South Africa including Wits, AFDA and The Market Theatre Lab. Together with Irene Stephanou, she wrote the book The World in an Orange –exploring the work of Barney Simon published by Jacana, which was shortlisted for the Alan Paton award. Following a successful run at Woordfees earlier this year, she is currently starring in Sam Shepard’s Curse of the Starving Class directed by Sylvaine Strike at the Baxter Theatre. Continue reading
Karen Meiring is the Director of M-Net kykNET channels, a position she’s held since 2013. She joined M-Net in 2009 as the head of Afrikaans channels and brought an extensive knowledge of the South African entertainment industry to her position. She has cemented kykNET as the leading producer of Afrikaans film and television content and ushered in successful projects under kykNET such as the Fiëstas, Ghoemas and the Silwerskerm Film Festival. She has also been honoured with numerous awards for her contribution to the arts and entertainment landscape in South Africa. Karen also founded the first ever Afrikaans Arts festival, the KKNK, and was later appointed as the CEO of the festival. She is also one of the founding memebers of Cutt Glas, an internationally renowned Afrikaans a cappella band. We sat down to chat with her during this year’s Silwerskerm Film Festival. Continue reading
Dorothy Ann Gould is one of South Africa’s most celebrated and respected actresses. She has worked professionally for the past 50 years and has gone on to star in over 180 productions which have awarded her several of South Africa’s top accolades. She is also the founder of Johannesburg Awakening Minds, a theatre troupe comprised of 13 homeless gentlemen. Recently, Dorothy was honoured with a 2018 Naledi Award for Innovation in Theatre. She is currently starring in Joan Didion’s The Year Of Magical Thinking, based on her memoir, which has transferred to the Baxter Theatre following its successful run at the Market Theatre earlier this year. Continue reading
Prolific choreographer and ballet dancer, Veronica Paeper has created more than 40 ballets, among them sixteen full-length works. During her performing career Veronica rose to become a principal dancer with three South African companies; CAPAB Ballet, PACT Ballet and PACOFS Ballet. Her latest production, Carmen, is a restaging of her award-winning choreography and makes its way to Joburg Ballet for a limited engagement. Continue reading
Lesedi Job is an actress and director. Lesedi made her directorial debut in 2017 with Mike van Graan’s When Swallows Cry at the Market Theatre and went on to win the Sophie Mgcina Emerging Voice Award. The production, which has transferred to Cape Town, is currently running at the Baxter Theatre. An accomplished performer in her own right, Lesedi received a Naledi Theatre Award nomination for her role in Lara Foot’s Fishers of Hope. Continue reading
Chantal Stanfield is an actress and singer who has featured in a number of South Africa’s leading television and stage productions. In the last year, she has charmed South African audiences by featuring on local Television soap operas Sewende Laan and Getroud met Rugby. After completing a run in Rock of Ages at the Lyric Theatre, her one-woman self-written show From Koe’siestes to Kneidlach makes its Cape Town debut at the Baxter Theatre following a successful Joburg engagement. We sat down at the Baxter to chat about her career, being labeled a “Soap Star” and finding the courage to create her own work.