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Author Archives

Robyn Sassen

A freelance arts writer since 1998, I fell in love with the theatre as a toddler, proved rubbish as a ballerina: my starring role was as Mrs Pussy in Noddy as a seven-year-old, and earned my stripes as an academic in Fine Arts and Art History, in subsequent years. I write for a range of online and print publications, including the Sunday Times, the Mail & Guardian and artslink.co.za and was formerly the arts editor of the SA Jewish Report, a weekly newspaper with which I was associated for 16 years. This blog promises you new stories every week, be they reviews, profiles, news stories or features.

When the day turns dark

THE DIFFICULT AND lonely place that an illness without obvious visible signs brings remains fraught, to this day, with speculation and gossip, taboos and embarrassment. In this week’s Afrikaans-language radio drama on Radio Sonder Grense, Man op die Maan (man on the moon), written by Helena Mellet, which […]

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Wish upon a star

ICE SHOWS IN Johannesburg are strange phenomena. They come with promises of wow, and a sense of the amazingly exotic. And for the first few minutes after the curtain rises, you’re glowingly aware that the stage is all frozen over and every movement on it is conducted with […]

All hail Jack the giant-killer

Please note: This production makes extensive use of strobe lights. FEE-FIE-FOE-FUM! YOU CAN smell the energy of a brand new pantomime, which reeks ‘event’ in glittery stuff and shiny things from the moment you enter the theatre. There are some very clear budget cuts in this year’s Joburg […]

Two to tango

WHEN A PLOT grabs you by key emotions and then twists and turns and slips and escapes your ability to predict its nuances, you get completely caught in what it has to offer. Bill Condon’s film The Good Liar, featuring stellar performers Ian McKellen and Helen Mirren, is […]

Cyclic terror in a frock of red

In a moment, he takes an audience who is laughing and chatting loudly, and renders it speechless, quietly weeping and praying. This is the starting point of Albert Silindokuhle Ibokwe Khoza’s Red Femicycle, which has enjoyed a few platforms in Gauteng this year. An essay on the scourge […]

Loss’s remedy

WHAT IF YOUR most treasured relative didn’t even know they were yours? The premises of Steven Woutelood’s magnificent work, My extraordinary summer with Tess, a Dutch-language film with English subtitles and magnificent sprinklings of salsa will take you through the whole gamut of holiday romance tropes, down to […]