When The Fugard Theatre announced their plans to bring King Kong back to the South African stage, the pressure was on for them to find a woman bold enough to step into the iconic role of Joyce. After a two year search which spanned the world, Nondumiso Tembe was finally cast in the highly coveted role. Born in South Africa and raised in New York City, Nondumiso Tembe is the real deal. An accomplished stage and screen actress as well as a singer-songwriter and dancer, she has managed to excel in every medium that she has stepped into while remaining incredibly grounded and focused on her career. For a full biography, please click here. Continue reading
Less than a year ago, Esther Nasser was named CEO of Joburg Ballet. As a choreographer, Nasser has created an extensive repertoire of new works to both commissioned and existing music and soundtracks, winning several awards for choreography. Nasser became involved in transformation in dance and theatre before South Africa achieved democracy in 1994 and remains actively involved in the process. She has established community and outreach projects, winning the Gauteng Achievement Community/Outreach Award in 1999. Nasser has also taught and lectured at leading SA universities and technikons, and has choreographed and directed extensively for television. Continue reading
Nicole Franco is a stage and screen actress currently starring in the Broadway and West End smash-hit, The Play That Goes Wrong which is currently playing at Theatre on the Bay following a sold out run in Johannesburg. A returned season of the production has just been announced for Joburg later this year. In addition to acting, Nicole also works as a second language teacher. We sat down to discuss this hilarious new play and her diverse career. Continue reading
Carlynn de Waal-Smit is essentially a superhero in the industry. She is an agent and founder of Contractors Artists. She is also an advocate for the rights of professional actors, serving as the National Secretary of SAGA, a guild which she helped form. She also serves on the executive board of the PMA. For the past few years, Carlynn has championed for fair and ethical treatment of performers in the industry. We sat down to discuss SAGA, the misconceptions surrounding being an agent and the future for actors in South Africa. Continue reading
Hayleigh Evans is a theatremaker and co-founder of POPArt, an independent Johannesburg based theatre, production company and performing arts centre that is located in the heart of Maboneng. Now in its 6th year, POPArt has become a staple in the Johannesburg theatre industry and has helmed some of South Africa’s most exciting, edgy and celebrated work. Continue reading
Joburg Ballet’s prima ballerina Burnise Silvius has announced that she will be retiring from the stage at the end of the upcoming season of La Traviata – The Ballet at Joburg Theatre. Professionally, Burnise has been dancing for over twenty years and has performed all over the world playing some of ballet’s most iconic and challenging roles. We sat down with Burnise to chat about her retirement and reflect back on her incredible career.
Rent the Musical is celebrating it’s 20th anniversary by returning to South Africa. Led by a cast of fresh-faced newbies, the Stephan Fourie Theatre Company helmed production will embark on a run at Artscape in February followed by a run at the Joburg Theatre in April. We recently had the opportunity to chat with the female ensemble of the show during rehearsals. You can click here to listen to the cast perform “Seasons of Love” live on the Expresso Show.
Fleur du Cap award-winner Lynelle Kenned returns to her role of Maria in The Fugard Theatre’s production of West Side Story which makes its Johannesburg transfer. A trained opera singer, this soprano has quickly established herself as a presenter and musical theatre leading lady. Credits, and talent aside, something that is incredibly striking about Lynelle is how she seems to radiate pure positivity and joy when talking about her career making it known that not only was she born to have this career but that she is living her dream.
Bianca Le Grange made a name for herself after competing on the first season of South African Idols. A few years, and a lot of hard work later, Bianca has become a full-fledged Musical Theatre leading lady tackling roles in David Kramer’s District 6 Kanala and Blood Brothers, for which she won a Naledi Award, Anita in West Side Story and most recently, as the narrator in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. We sat down with Bianca before one of her final performances of Joseph to chat about the role, her return to Anita and her Musical Theatre journey. Continue reading