I have just come home after another delightful performance of The Finkelsteins are Coming to Dinner at The Alexander Bar. We have just completed our first week of our three week run there and I have loved every second of it. Tonight’s audience was warm, vocal, responsive and so sweet; complete strangers came to congratulate me afterwards. I was also lucky to have a really old friend and his wife in the audience and I hung out a bit with them afterwards.
Although I didn’t say so at the time I privately dedicated tonight’s performance to Sybil Sands. I know she would have loved this play and I am so sad at her passing. Sybil was a Jewish mother and grandmother to the whole of Cape Town’s acting fraternity and I so was deeply connected to the part of mother tonight.
Sybil was the essence of what it meant to be that Jewish mother; she was kind and concerned, proud to show off the successes of all those on stage (we all inherited those silver beaded star keyrings from her), and pushy as hell for those on her books. She worried about everyone’s aches and pains, was connected to the grapevine, and unbelievably committed to seeing as much theatre as she possibly could.
She would always pat the seat next to her for me when I saw her at events or opening nights, and we would have a quick catch up. She knew everything about everyone in the show and would always tell me what she thought. Her favourites could do no wrong and she took great pleasure in them being her favourites, although, to be fair, she had many, many favourites.
Sybil Sands, tonight’s beautiful show was all for you.