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.

How to pinch the uncling knight

FILM REVIEW: MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR. HE’S FAT, HE’S lecherous and full of wind and his own sense of potency. This is Sir John Falstaff (Pearce Quigley), who takes centre stage in Shakespeare’s Merry Wives of Windsor, the Globe’s free youtube offering this fortnight. It’s a veritable soap […]

Honourable members, football hooligans

FILM REVIEW: THIS HOUSE. YOU DO NOT need to be an expert in the shenaginans of British political history to be swept away on the current of caustic cynicism and dead pan humour that sutures together this beautiful piece of theatre. James Graham’s contemporary work aligns Tory values […]

True selves, dervishes and calabashes

DANCE REVIEW: AMAWETHU. THE STRATA OF South Africa choreography run rich and deep and are about education and values as much they are about tradition and magnificence. We have in this country a plentiful culture of dance companies which have stretched their members to take authority on what […]

Riding dragons

RADIO DRAMA REVIEW: KOUE KAIINGS. ONE THING THAT the mandatory conscription of young men in South Africa during apartheid did was break people literally, and blow them to bits. Another was to break them from the inside out, in a way that the crude eye of rudimentary medical […]

Heroic bravado of a paper lantern

FILM REVIEW: A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE. THE ROLE OF Blanche du Bois in A Streetcar Named Desire has, since 1947 when Tennessee Williams first penned it, become iconic as a reflection of the tawdry vulnerability and bravado of a character losing her moorings, while she pretends to be […]

Death and the dithering husband

RADIO THEATRE REVIEW: DIE HUISBESOEK. WHEN YOU LISTEN to this week’s radio drama on Radio Sonder Grense, you will feel many prickles of lockdown incredulity as a bizarre tale of marital closeness, distance and schizophrenia fills your head. But those prickles have as much to do with a […]

Paean to an African hairdo

FILM REVIEW: THE BARBERSHOP CHRONICLES. WHERE IS IT that African men get to kick back, let their hair down and loosen their tongues? The communal urinal? The local bar? Under the pen of Inua Ellams, it’s the barbershop; South African writers of the ilk of Tony Miyambo, Sue […]