Cape Town Fringe returns to Mother City

18 August 2015

With a bold programme of more than 70 productions, this year’s Cape Town Fringe – which runs in the city from 24 September to 4 October – promises to be a showcase of the best of South African theatre.

Audiences can look forward to an invigorating mix of new and original work spanning every genre. It is the second time this annual event will be held in Cape Town.

Ismail Mahomed, the festival’s artistic director, said the Cape Town Fringe was evolving its own artistic fingerprint – that of an engaged, original, and socially aware programme.

“It demonstrates how independent artists and arts companies are passionately engaging with the world around them and bringing that experience to their work,” Mahomed said. More productions were likely be added in the coming weeks as contractual and other discussions were concluded.

Magic is on the bill

While the programme comprises mostly theatre, dance, performance art, physical theatre, music, family theatre and magic will round off the 11-day festival.

This year’s line-up aims to offer a wide choice, ensuring that the Fringe matches the vibrancy and creativity of other Fringe festivals worldwide. “Audiences will be able to craft an amazing experience, drawing from productions that won the coveted Standard Bank Ovation Award at the recent National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, through to original work that is devised and created specifically to premiere at this year’s Fringe,” he said.

More venues join the Fringe

Produced by the experienced team at the National Arts Festival, the Cape Town Fringe will make use of venues in the city centre, Langa, and at the V&A Waterfront for the first time in 2015.

“The programme has a strong Cape flavour, with locally based artists making up about 60% of the programme,” said Fringe chief executive Tony Lankester. More than 18 000 tickets were sold last year, and the event was estimated to have an economic impact of more than R4-million, over and above its R2.7-million direct spend.

Local partnerships were crucial to staging the event, Mahomed added, highlighting relationships with initiatives such as the Zabalaza Festival, Pansa and Assitej, all of which had made the programme “richer and more relevant”.

“The Fringe has helped Cape Town earn the enviable reputation of an events destination of choice,” said Garreth Bloor, the Cape Town mayoral committee member for tourism, events and economic development. The economic spin-offs of events held enormous benefits for the city and its residents.

Innovations this year

Lankester said last year’s event had given the organisers a solid base from which to innovate: “We want to grow the event even more and we will be introducing some innovations developed as a result of open engagement with Cape artists and institutions earlier this year.”

Some of this year’s innovations include:

  • Patrons who book via the Cape Town Fringe website will be able to make use of the print-at-home-ticket function, reducing queuing time for patrons.
  • An enhanced and more user-friendly Cape Town Fringe mobile booking and planning app.
  • A stronger programme of events for schools and learner groups during the daytime.
  • Greater cognisance given to religious and other holidays in the planning process.
  • Expanding to venues beyond the City Hall precinct.
  • Partnering with Cape Town Tourism and a specialist travel agent to put packages together for visitors from other cities wanting to attend the Fringe.
  • More specials for workers in the City to attend shows during their lunch breaks. “Give us your lunch hour; we’ll give you a show and a sandwich,” say organisers.
  • A busier and more vibrant Fringe Club in the City Hall, where patrons will be able to meet for coffee, a glass of wine and a light meal.

Joining the city as a full sponsor of the event this year is Standard Bank, which will host the Standard Bank music stage in the City Hall.

“The venue will feature some amazing entertainment,” said Jenny Pheiffer, head of brand and group sponsorships at Standard Bank.

Booking opens at the end of August through the Cape Town Fringe website.

Productions at #CTF2015

Name Company Genre Province
Last Cow Standing Nu-Breed Theatre Company Theatre Kwa-Zulu Natal
7 Deadly Sins Macbob Productions Theatre Kwa-Zulu Natal
Acatears Music Vaal University of Technology – BOTC Music Gauteng
Adam Small BeJazzed Applauz Arts Initiative Music Western Cape
ADAM:Vichistravrya or I wish I were Caitlyn Jenner Tazme Pillay Theatre Western Cape
Al Julle Volke Wessel Pretorius Theatre Western Cape
An Extraordinarily Ordinary Life KB Theatre Productions Theatre Western Cape
Ashes Rust Co-Operative Theatre Western Cape
Astonish Wonga Magic Illusion Western Cape
B*tch Stole My Doek Copy Dog Theatre Western Cape
Barbed Wire Wallpaper Clockwork HeART Dance & Physical Theatre Gauteng
Barred Yellow Glove Collective Dance & Physical Theatre Western Cape
Big Girls Follow Spot Productions Western Cape
Blaqseed Vaal University of Technology – BOTC Music Gauteng
Blood Orange Untouchable Productions / Craig Morris Dance & Physical Theatre Gauteng
Butlers and Babysitters Slick ‘n Sleeve Theatre Western Cape
Detritus for One Alan Parker Dance & Physical Theatre Western Cape
Douche JawBreaker Productions Dance & Physical Theatre Western Cape
Ella’s Horses Charles Fourie Productions Theatre Western Cape
Exhibit S, Ode to Saartjie Baartman by a Black South African Woman Thola Antamu Theatre Western Cape
Exit the King Flat Monkey Company Theatre Western Cape
Fat Man’s Coop Applauz Arts Initiative in association with PANSA Theatre Western Cape
Gug’Othandayo The Musical Vukani Emalahleni Service Centre Theatre Mpumalanga
Hatchetman Hatchetman Music Western Cape
How Stories Began Jungle Theatre Company Theatre Western Cape
ĦREJJEF – folktales Soundscapes Music Malta
Inja ka Vuyo Isibane Puppet and Drama Group in association with UNIMA Theatre Western Cape
Is this for Keeps?/ Between Love and Pain Baxter Theatre centre Theatre Western Cape
Jazz with Asanda Mqiki Asanda Mqiki Music Eastern Cape
Johnny Boskak is Feeling Funny Untouchable Productions / Craig Morris Theatre Gauteng
Magic through the Ages Brendon Peel Illusion Eastern Cape
Mime La France Mime Theater promotions Gauteng
Monna ga se Nku Baikitsi Arts Collective Dance & Physical Theatre Western Cape
Mooi Street Moves Nompumelelo Mtshali Theatre Kwa-Zulu Natal
Morayks Live Ramamudi Trading Enterprise (Pty) Ltd Music Gauteng
Naked Knitting and Other Contradictory Acts Liquid Fusion Theatre Gauteng
Nat Rust Co-Operative Theatre Western Cape
Ndendile Baxter Theatre Centre Theatre Western Cape
NguMzimba Wam Art of Hearts in association UNIMA Theatre Western Cape
Nomadic Orchestra Music Western Cape
Ontwrig Drama Department, Stellenbosch University & Woordfees Dance & Physical Theatre Western Cape
On and On Cape Junior Ballet Company Dance & Physical Theatre Western Cape
PANSA Unplugged: Collaborations PANSA Western Cape Dance, Music, Comedy & Poetry Western Cape
Rooivalk Nico Scheepers Theatre Western Cape
Sleepless Dreams Stuart Lightbody Illusion Western Cape
Sleight of Mouth II: Now Talk Your Way Out Of This! Marcel Oudejans Illusion Western Cape
Smaarties Abstr(ACT) Productions Theatre North West
Stil(l) Abstr(ACT) Productions Theatre North West
Suggestion Box #justsaying OddBody Theatre Public Art / Public Art Western Cape
Sweet Sounds of Maya Spector Maya Spector Music Western Cape
The Brothers Live The Brothers Music Eastern Cape
The Incredible Journey KB Theatre Productions Theatre Western Cape
The Politics of Love & Femininity…Black hair & all that Jazz Wild Young Bohemians Theatre Mpumalanga
Tom Thum & Jamie McDowell Music Australia
Trophy Gavin Krastin Performance Art Western Cape
Tumi Thusi TTM Productions Music Gauteng
Uhambo Lomhambi Baxter Theatre Centre Theatre Western Cape
Waltz The Gatherings/Intlangano supported by First Physical Theatre and endorsed by Creative City Grahamstown Dance & Physical Theatre Eastern Cape
Warrior On Wheels The Chaeli Campaign Theatre Western Cape
Waterline Uyabona Ke Dance & Physical Theatre Eastern Cape
We didn’t come to hell for the croissants: 7 deadly new stories for consenting adults POPArt productions in association with Jemma Kahn Theatre Gauteng
What goes UP… FTH:K Theatre Western Cape

Source: SAinfo reporter