All go for Hilton Arts Festival

Brother’s Ash and Brad Searle are pictured after their performance at the 2015 Hilton Arts Festival. The picture was part of the Out of Character Exhibition that was started in 2014 by portrait photographer, Harry Lock. The Searle brothers have a new show at this year’s Hilton Arts Festival.


BOOKINGS for the Jongosi Schools Festival, the youth-orientated part of the upcoming Hilton Arts Festival at Hilton College, are going full steam ahead, with the full line up now finalised.

The Jongosi programme takes place on the first day of the three-day Hilton Arts Festival which is being held in the grounds of Hilton College from September 14 to 16 . Careful consideration has gone into creating the Friday programme so it has an appeal of younger audiences.

“Our youth-orientated festival was borne to introduce young people to the quality of theatre, to teach them that theatre entertains, educates and provokes discussions. The aim of our Jongosi day is to make the youth of today, the audiences of tomorrow,” explains the director of the festival, Sue Clarence.

A total of R375 per pupil allows that person the opportunity to experience three shows, and between shows they can partake in a variety of workshops at no additional cost.

“For those teachers bringing child in Grades 6 to 8, I suggest your choices should be: Big Boys, Narrative Dreams and Hocus Pocus. All productions are suitable for Grades 9 to 12, except where specifically indicated,” says Clarence

Big Boys The Third, Reloaded, Rebooted and Re-Invented has dancing brothers Ash and Brad Searle back with an energetic, feel-good piece that proves real mean dance, some with absurd antics.

Maritzburg College old boy, Rob van Vuuren, who will be entertaining at the Hilton Arts Festival and the youth segment of the festival, the Jongosi Schools Festival.

Also among festival choices for the young is Comedy’s Cool, featuring Rob van Vuuren, Jem Atkins and Kelvin Stoffels in a stand-up comedy about the trials and tribulations of growing up, finding your place, and doing what you love in this crazy world.

Then there’s Green Man Flashing, an international, award-winning production by South African playwright Mike van Graan. This fast-paced political thriller, written in a filmic style, stars Litha Bam, Michelle Douglas, Kate Liquorish, Sechaba Morojele and David Denis.

Silkworm is a story told through the eyes of Georgina, a gregarious and socially awkward child. The show makes extensive use of storytelling and clowning techniques and tells of how little things are often big things.

Suddenly the Storm, written by and starring multiple-award-winning playwright Paul Slabolepsky, starts as a smouldering, dark comedy then turns into a rollercoaster ride of startling revelations, rages and recriminations. It also features Charmaine Weir-Smith and Renate Stuurman.

Limited tickets are still available for Die Reuk van Appels. After sold-out performances at the 2017 National Arts Festival and The Fugard Theatre, this coming-of-age story comes to Hilton. The stage adaption of the acclaimed 1993 debut novel by Mark Behr eloquently captures the Afrikaner mentality in the late 1970s and 1980s and the brutal consequences of apartheid and militarisation of South African life.

Hocus Pocus is a show filled with mysteries and tricks. This phenomenal piece of pure entertainment is performed by Brendon Peel and will appeal to all those who enjoy magic and illusion.

James Cairns vs Humanity is improvisation theatre at its best. This is a form of live theatre in which the plot, characters and dialect are made up in the moment, so no show is ever the same. In essence, it is Cairns versus his audience… only one of them walks out alive.

Finally, Narrative Dreams is a play that explores the nature of childhood, a stage in life often described as utopian. Two boys from different worlds, puzzle their way through the tumultuous, playful years of childhood life in search of friendship and acceptance.

Bookings for Jongosi are open. For info contact the festival office on 033 383 0127 or visit

The festival would not be possible without the generous support of Hilton College, Tiso Black Star, Grindrod Bank, Black Coffee Design, DWR Distribution, Extreme Events, Bidvest Car Rental, KZN Dept of Arts & Culture, Redlands Hotel, Assitej South Africa, Loud Crowd, Sappi, BASA, Corona and Capital Media.

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