Back by overwhelming popular demand after 117 sold-out performances, District Six – Kanala returns in November.
On the 11th of February 1966 District Six was declared a white group area. Over 60,000 people were relocated. A way of life was destroyed. Fifty years have passed and today hardly anything remains of what was once a thriving, densely populated, multi-ethnic and multi-cultural community.
The Fugard Theatre, located in District Six, will pay homage to what was once District Six – the place and its people.
The show premiered on 11 February 2016, precisely 50 years after the declaration of 1966.
David Kramer, who together with his partner the late Taliep Petersen created the hugely successful musicals - District Six, Fairyland and Kat and the Kings, celebrates the vibrant musical culture that was to be found in the streets, halls, hotels, clubs and bioscopes of 1960s District Six.
“Kanala will be my way of celebrating the memory of some of the amazing talents from District Six that I met and worked with over the past three decades. People like Taliep Petersen, Salie Daniels, Cyril Valentine, Billy Jaftha, Dougie Schrikker, Al Hendricks, Zayn Adam as well as Richard Rive and Vincent Kolbe. These were all friends who shared their vivid recollections of place and people with me” said Kramer.
“I am really thrilled to be directing these dynamic, young performers, most of whom I’ve had the pleasure of working with in previous Fugard Theatre productions of Kat and the Kings, Blood Brothers and Orpheus in Africa. They are all exceptionally versatile and capable of delivering the heartfelt and high energy performances that I have in mind for Kanala.”
The performers will be accompanied by a six piece live band under the guidance of musical director Alistair Izobell.
“Alistair, Donveno and I have had a wonderfully creative relationship for many years now and I can’t wait to get back into the rehearsal room with them. Together with the band we’ll be creating an accompaniment bursting with the rhythms and flavours of the music that was popular at that time.”
The Fugard Theatre, with its entrance being the historic Congregational Church Hall in Caledon Street, is proud to bear the name of South Africa’s greatest playwright who for more than 50 years has written soul-searing plays with roles for all South Africans which have moved audiences in South Africa and around the world to laughter and tears as they reflected the racism, barbarity and inhumanity of apartheid. The Fugard Theatre is also proud to be located in District Six and honours the history and memory of that vibrant community so savagely uprooted during the apartheid era.
Superb ... Kanala is a slick production; the performances, the set, the music all achieve a standard that The Fugard has become renowned for. - The Cape Times
Nothing less than brilliant - bruinou.com
A slick, seamless and fast-paced celebration - The Daily Maverick
Dis die hart en siel van D6 - Die Burger
It delivers, over and over. Loud and vibrant, filled with song, dance, lots of laughter and the heartbreak of losing your home, it’s a perfect celebration of the people who lived in District Six and their music. - What's On In Cape Town
The acclaimed production of Keith Huff’s award-winning Broadway hit A Steady Rain transfers to the Fugard Studio Theatre, following a sold out season at the Alexander Bar.
Brent Palmer (The Kingmakers; Bench) and Nicholas Pauling (Clybourne Park; The Pervert Laura) star in this gritty, rich and entirely gripping noir tale of two Chicago police officers whose inner need to serve and protect both consumes them and rips them apart.
The play is directed by Adrian Collins (Hamlet; Bench; The Birthday Party). Pauling and Collins were both nominated for Fleur du Cap awards this year, for Best Actor and Best New Director respectively.
A Steady Rain takes the audience on a riveting, relentless journey. Using razor-sharp story-telling, writer Keith Huff weaves the perspectives of two Chicago police officers, Joey and Denny, into a harrowing story. Long time partners and best friends, Joey and Denny have serious problems. Joey struggles with alcohol while he secretly obsesses over Denny's wife. Denny is resentful, aggressive and a racist cheater. During the course of the compelling and devastating narrative, the audience is kept white-knuckled right until the moment the lights go down.
Press comments from the previous run of this production included: "a cracker of a script…..the synergy and electric energy between the pair...makes this a compelling piece of drama...remarkable" (Tracey Saunders, Cape Times); "gripping theatre that delivers everything promised by Keith Huff’s award-winning play" (Beverley Brommert, Cape Argus) and "’n vuishou in die maag … 4 stars" (Mariana Malan Die Burger).
"A Steady Rain is an incredible human story of two men," says Daniel Galloway, Executive Director of The Fugard. "On Broadway, the play broke the record for the highest weekly gross of a non-musical production. Brent Palmer, Nicholas Pauling and Adrian Collins have done justice to Huff’s gripping text in this outstanding production."
Following a sold out performance at the Fugard Theatre earlier this year, Eric Abraham and the Fugard Theatre present four solo piano concerts by global music icon and South African legend Abdullah Ibrahim.
Hot on the heels of his much lauded appearance at the thirtieth annual Oslo Jazz Festival in Norway, these will be Mr. Ibrahim's only other solo piano concerts in Cape Town in 2016. The special performances will be a brand new presentation of new and older compositions spanning nearly seventy years of a remarkable career, which all began in Kensington and District Six at the age of seven.
Abdullah Ibrahim is South Africa’s most distinguished pianist and a world-respected master musician. Following his performance at the Oslo Jazz Festival, John Ephland, writing on allaboutjazz.com, described his performance as a ‘once-in-a-lifetime event’ and commented that his performance has:
‘…a certain signature soulfulness that can only come from living life rich and full. Full of feeling, rich in experience (patience). And yes, a solo piano recital may seem simple but to this listener it once again revealed how exposed a true artist makes himself when heart, gut and soul combine with a voice unlike any other in the jazz piano tradition’. “We are honoured to be hosting these rare and limited performances in Cape Town by Abdullah Ibrahim in the heart of his original home in District Six,” says Eric Abraham, Founding Producer and Owner of the Fugard Theatre.
Harrington Street car park is located at the corner of Caledon and Harrington streets and is available for the use of theatre patrons. Visit the cosy ground-floor bar, where delicious snacks are also available, and which opens two hours before all scheduled show times and stays open until last rounds are called… often as late as 1am. And if the weather is fine the bar on the fantastic rooftop terrace is opened, with its panoramic views of the city. Both bars offer a range of wines from some of the Cape’s top estates.