Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Rhymes with wit, smells really bad

The Fleur Du Cap awards have sent out an embarrassing and contrite press release on artslink explaining how they discovered that two of the recipients of awards in two separate categories on the night were wrong! So, read the story. The gist of it is that judges were surprised at the results on the night and ‘discovered’ that the two awards had been given to the wrong people!

James Cairns who won (not!) for Best Performer in a One Man Show and Ilse Klink who won (not!) for Best Performer in a Musical were quietly stripped of their awards and the “rightful” recipients, Antoinette Kellerman and James Borthwick were officially crowned the winners. Anyone else find this one of the siffest, most unsavory things for the respected (but often controversial) annual Cape theatre awards to have done?

Nothing like saying “sorry, wrong guys” to royally screw up the credibility  of the process, the judges the organisation, the supporters and the artists who were (and weren’t) nominated! A bit like pissing on your own battery and then still hoping it will run your car, if you ask me. I would be furious, and hurt and embarrassed if I was James or Ilse, and confused and embarrassed if I was a ‘newly crowned’ winner.

There are also some really fishy questions that need to be asked. If the ballot is really secret how were the ‘glaring mistakes’ discovered? Then, why was it not left alone? At what point could it be helpful or respectful or credible to open that can of ‘past-its-sell-by-date’ worms? Why? Why do something that definitely only causes huge harm and creates massive doubt in the minds of all who won, and didn’t win and those of us who watched. Why make your own names gat like that?

The story is a horrible, hurtful slab of skinner, complete with shock value, skandaal and bad taste. And I don’t know how it can be fixed.

Aikona FDC and Distell.

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2 Comments

  1. Simon Cooper

    Couldn’t agree more. We have sent this letter to the editor of the Cape Times and to Irma Albers [as the representative of Distell] and which I will send to our KBT database and we will put it up on our website.

    “Dear Sir

    The bland, incomplete and unconvincing press release regarding the withdrawing of 2 Fleur du Cap awards issued by “representatives of Distell and the Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards” relating to events at the 2011 Fleur du Cap ceremony requires comment. It is an attempt to gloss over and get past an embarrassing thing but if you want to bare your soul, tell the whole story !

    First let us declare our interest – we own Kalk Bay Theatre at which James Cairns performed the 2 shows for which he was nominated [separately] in the category of “Best Performance in a One-Person Show” and James is one of the people who was prepared to support us in the early days so he is special to us, as indeed are all the people who work at our theatre. Before commenting further we state unequivocally that we respect the Fleur du Cap judges who we know and from what we know it seems as if this horrific chain of events cannot be laid at their door.

    We know of, but have not worked with Ilse Klink and did not see the performance for which she was nominated but she is a respected performer.

    That said how do you take away awards publicly announced to a “glittering” audience after a nomination and voting process ? The answer is you don’t, you simply can’t. Either you live with the mistake and hope that it remains out of the public eye or you declare a tie at the very least, although that too is embarrassing to say the least. You do not publicly humiliate 2 of South Africa’s leading performers by doing exactly what the “representatives of Distell and the Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards” have now done, 9 days after the fact.

    Perhaps the “representatives of Distell and the Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards” would care to answer the following questions –

    1. the ballot for the winners is secret – how then do “a few of the judges” find themselves able to query the outcome ? What is the process of getting to the winners and how is this monitored and by whom ?

    2. why has it taken 9 days for this matter to be resolved [the awards were announced on March 20 at a public, well attended and hugely publicised ceremony at the Artscape Theatre] ? What has been happening in that time ?

    3. what exactly was the “administrative error” that led to this ? We have been told that in the case of James Cairns, all the votes he received for both the shows were added together instead of being tallied separately per show. This does not hold water for Ilse Klink who was only nominated once in her category so how did they get that wrong ?

    4. what steps are being taken to [a] discipline/fire the person/s responsible for the “administrative error” and [b] ensure that it doesn’t happen again ?

    This may have one of the best-ever Awards events” on the evening but it has soured now. The credibility of the Fleur du Cap awards has been seriously damaged [which is sad considering that “LONDON ROAD”, a KBT Production, received 3 awards on the evening] : the whole thing has been atrociously handled and leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

    Our hearts go out to Ilse Klink. With respect to Antoinette Kellerman, we know that James Cairns is a worthy winner and should have won. We will continue to regard him as a Fleur du Cap winner notwithstanding the ham-handed attempts of the organisers to say otherwise.

    Yours sincerely
    Helen & Simon Cooper”

  2. Herman Lategan

    I am with you all on this. What happened was unforgivable, heads should have rolled. But it’s Business As Usual for everybody, no follow up in any of the papers.Pathetic.

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