Hit Baxter plays for KZN festival

Andrew Buckland and Jennifer Steyn in Lara Foot’s The Inconvenience of Wings, headed for the Hilton Arts Festival in September. Picture by Oscar O’Ryan.


CAPE Town’s Baxter Theatre, under the visionary leadership of Lara Foot, has provided KwaZulu-Natal’s Hilton Arts Festival with a wonderful variety of challenging original productions over the years.

For this year’s 25th event, at picturesque Hilton College from September 15 to 17,  the Baxter will be producing two shows – The Inconvenience of Wings and Karoo Moose – as part of a varied programme of theatre, arts, craft, music and fun in general. The full programme will be available from August 11.

“We are looking forward to two remarkable productions, both of which have a slew of prestigious awards to their names. The presence of Baxter shows at our festival provides local audiences with the rare opportunity of seeing major, large-scale theatre productions which would otherwise not travel to KwaZulu-Natal,” says festival director Sue Clarence, of Durban.

Foot, the National Arts Festival 2016 Featured Artist and 1996 Standard Bank Young Artist for Theatre, has assembled a stellar cast and creative team for The Inconvenience of Wings, which brings bi-polar disorder and friendships into the spotlight. 

For mature audiences only, the play features Jennifer Steyn, Andrew Buckland and Mncedisi Shabangu in a drama set in a landscape of memory and dreams, and which tackles the issues of friendship, dysfunction, addiction and angels.

The spotlight is on Sara (Steyn), who has been diagnosed with bi-polar disorder. She is compulsive, alive and hates women who know how to make cupcakes. Andrew (Buckland), her husband, is on a mission to find a cure for her afflictions and Professor James (Shabangu) quietly tries to save Andrew from himself.

The cast of Karoo Moose. Picture by Oscar ‘O’Ryan.

Foot’s enduring physical theatre production, Karoo Moose, chronicles the story of a young girl, Thomaza, who lives in an isolated village in the Karoo region of South Africa. She ends up killing a moose.

Strange and enchanting, the production explores the disintegration of the family unit and the violation of innocence.

Performed in English, the play cleverly and creatively combines African storytelling and magical realism.

“The themes of the story, for me, were bound up in the idea that the children in the village needed some kind of magical event to free them from abuse, neglect and poverty. Something magical was needed to break the cycle of violence,” says Foot.

Written more than a decade ago, Karoo Moose has collected 15 top South African theatre awards, including Best Director and Best SA Production at the Fleur du Cape Theatre Awards, Most Innovative Work from Aardvark and Best Production at the Aardklop Festival.

“A gem of a play….touching, imaginative and blessed with a flavour all its own. A celebration of story-telling,” enthused Charles Spencer of the Telegraph, UK.

The Hilton Arts Festival would not be possible without the generous support of Hilton College, Times Media Group, Grindrod Bank, Black Coffee, DWR, PWC,  Bidvest Car Rental, Indwe Risk Services, Assitej South Africa, Loud Crowd, Sappi, Redlands Hotel, Zultrans, KZN Dept of Arts & Culture, BASA, Castle Lite, Maritzburg Sun, Caxton, KZN Weddings &  Functions, Midlands Stretch Tents, and Ken Forrester Wines.

For more info visit http://www.hiltonfestival.co.za/ or like the Facebook page, Hilton Arts Festival. Follow on Twitter @HiltonFest or download the free APP Hilton Arts Festival for both Android and IOS. All enquiries to 033 383 0126/7 .



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