OCCASIONALLY, YOU FIND a radio play which has the wisdom to splay open a socially controversial issue by engaging your intellectual muscle as well as all your funny bones. Doller as kopaf is a hilarious and brilliant spot of social commentary, crisply focused and beautifully constructed around the idiosyncrasies, morals and flaws of a community. Focused on the curious, yet contemporary issue of sex robots, it’s yet another reason, courtesy of Radio Sonder Grense, for you to stay home this Thursday.
Written by William Oosthuizen, this Afrikaans-language radio drama features some of South African theatre’s best known performers, including Tobie Cronjé, Rika Sennett and Elize Cawood. But that’s not the only reason this is a must-listen piece. When Freek (Paul Lückoff) decides to acquire a plastic pin up girl with all the nooks and crannies of a real woman, for his own pleasure, his friends degenerate into teenaged boys, skirting with unsuppressed and completely titillated giggles around the prospect.
They’re so enamoured of the idea that the secret slips out, and the community’s women get to hear of it. Tossing in all the complex issues around personification and what modesty means if the body in question is not alive, to say nothing of feminist chagrin, the work takes on a spy energy and the women cook up a subterfuge. But as with many subterfuges where the motive is not exactly in the interests of the party concerned, but rather slips under the moggy idea of ‘morality’, it is hilariously doomed.
If you have loved the BBC series Mapp and Lucia, which features Miranda Richardson, you will not want Doller as kapof to end: there’s a nifty sense of Afrikaans social humour in this work which vies, in its sophistication and cleverness with the best of the Beeb. Don’t miss this one!
- Doller as kopaf is written by William Oosthuizen and directed by Kobus Burger. Featuring technical input by Bongiwe Thomas and Evert Snyman Jr, it is performed by Elize Cawood, Tobie Cronjé, Paul Lückhoff, Heidi Mollentze, Rina Nienaber, Rika Sennett, Ria Smit and Louis van Niekerk, and broadcasts on RSG on November 21 at 8pm. It is rebroadcast on the station’s all night programme, Deurnag at 1am on Monday November 25 and is also available on podcast: rsg.co.za