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.
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
Elsabé Daneel is an actress, director, producer, lecturer and TV presenter. With a career spanning across stage and screen, her select stage credits include Feeskatte, Ou Blare and Deon Opperman’s one-woman show, Bittersoet, which she toured extensively to all the major arts festivals in South Africa over the course of several years. Her TV career includes 18 SABC dramas. In 2001 she started Elsabé Daneel Productions which sees her taking on the role of producer, director and presenter of corporate videos and documentaries for private clients, kykNET and M-Net. She is currently starring as matriarch ‘Sandra Viljoen’ in Ferdinand van Zyl’s complex war drama, The Recce, which arrives in theatres on September 28th. We sat down with her to chat about her multifaceted career and why her role in The Recce is the “deepest” she’s ever gone. Continue reading
Lynita Crofford is an actress, theatre-maker and lecturer who has starred in more than 50 Film and TV projects. With an equally impressive theatre resume to boot, she received a 2013 Fleur du Cap nomination for her role as Emily Hobhouse in An Audience with Miss Hobhouse. Earlier this year Lynita charmed Cape Town audiences by starring in Tara Notcutt’s all-female production of The Taming of the Shrew. She is about to begin performances as Alice B. Toklas in Gertrude Stein and a Companion which will have a limited run at the Alexander Bar later this month.
For 13 years, actress and producer Diaan Lawrenson charmed South African audiences by starring on 7de Laan. Since leaving the series, she has gone on to star in critically acclaimed films such as Raaiselkind, Sink and her latest film Susters which is now playing in select theatres. An accomplished theatre actress, she is also the co-founder of Jester Productions, a multimedia production company that she founded alongside her husband, and fellow actor, Jody Abrahams, which focuses on facilitating, developing and producing original South African concepts. Continue reading
Jennie Reznek is multihyphenate. She is a performer, theatremaker, director, choreographer, lecturer, co-founder, trustee and director of Magnet Theatre. She has also worked as an aerialist and clown in the circus. We sat down with her at the Magnet Theatre offices to discuss her career, the challenges of founding a theatre company and the moments that have inspired her. Continue reading