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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.

How to garrotte a sacred Jewish cow

Having seen the play again last night, I stand by my critical opinion, but had something more to say about the rest of the cast. Advertisements

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The universe in a classical guitar

He laughs at the idea of being the “darling” of the Johannesburg International Mozart Festival, the eighth edition of which started last Saturday, but classical guitarist James Grace has been an important festival drawcard, performing during the last three years of the festival to capacity-packed venues. This year […]

How to garrotte a sacred Jewish cow

Jewish identity is one of those things so thick with potholes and heavy humourless traps that you know you will be standing on toes, whatever you say. From Israeli politics to Holocaust history, levels of ritual observance to over protective mothers, it’s also a modern day culture totally […]

What a glorious show!

Quite often, in the arts, you find yourself experiencing something that trails a long history of film  and stage musicals, of iconic dance moves and schmaltzy narrative that has irrevocably slipped into cliché. Mostly, this kind of candy floss cuteness that is passed down from generation to generation […]

JAG’s brave curators, absent support

As you walk into the majestic space of the Edwin Lutyens-wing of the Johannesburg Art Gallery – through the entrance that faces the railway lines – you are confronted with two utterly superb Dumile Feni drawings. They tower over you as they reach, in their characteristic brutal charcoal […]

Dance should make you weep, says Sylvia

With her floor-length purple dress riffling in the wind as she shimmied across President Street on the arm of choreographer/dancer Muzi Shili and others associated with Moving Into Dance Mophatong (MiD) , arguably South Africa’s most important contemporary dance company, Sylvia “MaGogo” Glasser, the institution’s founder, bade MiD […]