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Category: Robyn Sassen

Songs of angry men and their moms

AFRIKAANS RADIO DRAMA REVIEW: VERGIFNIS. SOMETIMES RELATIONSHIPS ARE forged between people that have absolutely nothing to do with the ties of social ordinariness or the expectations of convention. Sliding carefully into archetype, these are the maverick connections necessary to bring dynamite to important ambitions. A tale of dreams, […]

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The guys your parents warned you about

FILM REVIEW: VOËLVRY — THE MOVIE. THEY WERE MORE than just angry young Afrikaans-speaking men. Musicians of the ilk of Johannes Kerkorrel, James Phillips, Koos Kombuis, Bernoldus Niemand, Willem Möller and others had the edge that could force change in a country locked down by blind racist imperatives. […]

Whirligig revenges and yellow stockings

THEATRE REVIEW: TWELFTH NIGHT Humour is easily one of the most difficult genres to uphold: it dates; what may have been pants-wettingly hilarious in the 1500s, might be simply boring or perplexing today. In the hands of Simon Godwin, however, the gender fluid wildness of William Shakespeare’s Twelfth […]

Love and the edge of doom

REVIEW: AFRIKAANS RADIO DRAMA: GENADE. WHAT DOES IT mean to tell someone you love them? Is it a silly, easy cliché; does it mean you promise to love them, come what may, and do whatever you can to preserve that love, that life? Or does it mean you […]

The cardinal who couldn’t.

REVIEW: AFRIKAANS RADIO DRAMA: DIE HEKS THE 15TH CENTURY and its misogyny in Europe is legend. Iconic Afrikaans writer C Louis Leipoldt takes on the mantle worn by Umberto Eco, John Whiting and Arthur Miller in their contemplation of the phenomenon of witch burning, in a magnificent piece […]

More beautiful than a summer’s day

THEATRE REVIEW: ROMEO AND JULIET. THERE IS SOMETHING eminently satisfying and comforting in this world, where everything is off kilter, of knowing that certain traditions are being upheld with a great sense of fierceness. Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London has, in its wisdom and generosity, established a free […]

Little girl with the face of an adult

REVIEW: AFRIKAANS RADIO DRAMA: DIE SWERFJARE VAN POPPIE NONGENA. THE POTENT TREASURE of the complicated situation of standing still in a place where history is in the making, turning and swirling on itself and all that it may mean to future generations feels particularly prescient in this age […]

How to strip down stereotypes

SONG REVIEW: UGLY. The goosebumps start with the first few lyrics. They don’t stop. Yahto Kraft may be just 18, but he has the sensibility, the cojones and the focus to take on the flaccid stereotypes of this world with complete clarity. And win. His debut single, Ugly, […]

The meaning of treasure. And cheese.

THEATRE REVIEW: TREASURE ISLAND. PATSY FERRAN IS a Spanish-born actor, who at the time of the stage debut of the National Theatre’s Treasure Island was in her early 20s. The enormity of her presence, the wit and poetry of the manner in which she articulates and inhabits the […]