I have only today become aware of the terrible and hideous ordeal that Roz van der Vyver endured. She was gang raped and beaten up after responding to a gumtree ad for work. She then suffered seizures and is in critical condition in hospital.
Many of you will remember Roz as Mannie’s right hand somebody at The Baxter. I remember her mainly from when we did Noah of Cape Town there, but I also had many, many interactions with her in and out of her office, and a few hilarious and fraught theatre conversations and emergency chats that went on way into the night on our cellphones as we sorted out contract disasters, mad agents and other theatre stuff. I do not know the how, why or even the exact when of her fallout with The Baxter and I can only imagine how hard it must have been for her if she was trying to find work.
I am devastated by what happened to her. I am also concerned that the blame game has already started: Gumtree, those at The Baxter who ‘skopped’ her out, those who didn’t come to her defense at the time. I propose something different. Let’s all use our energies to do something positive. Roz was the Cape Town rep for The Theatre Benevolent Fund. Let’s sign up, help our own, be kind and loving, and a real community. Let’s help each other make and find work. It’s damn hard out there.