Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Tag: Kalk Bay Theatre (Page 1 of 5)

Violet Online again

Just a quick post to announce the return of gorgeous Lynita Crofford in Violet Online, at the Kalk Bay Theatre from 27 Jan to 8 Feb. So many people were sad to have missed our last short run, but now’s your chance to catch this cheeky, funny, rude and irreverent look at what it’s like to date, cyber sex, raise teenagers and dress as an over 40 single woman. Bookings are open here.


Improv = Happy

Last night was Improguise’s first show of the year and I played. (We play a TheatreSports type format of short form improv every Monday night at The Galloway Theatre at 8pm, call 0729393351 to book). To tell you the truth I was in need of a positive kick. I was feeling a bit glum and very out of sorts (personal stuff). Yes we were rusty, and yes we made silly mistakes, and yes we all found ourselves in various stages of undoneness, but on the whole, and taking everything into account it was pretty fantastic, and I loved being back on the improv stage after a long gap of about two months. It really is the most happy space for me. I love playing, I love the ideas, the laughing, the creativity. I love the audience (last night’s was particularly lovely, even though they liked my team less. I hold onto these things you see.) My team members are like family. We slide into the best kind of support of each other on stage and then give harsh, practical notes after the show. We make each other look and feel good.

We had a guest from out of town yesterday. Bart, a Belgian improvisor did a crash course musical improv workshop with us before the show, and he even played with us as a second musical improviser during the show. It’s always so inspiring to have a bit of an outside shake-up, and this was a goodie. We are all fired up now and ready to launch into our long form musicals, which is just as well, since it is one of our formats for our improv fest, a week long festival of improv at the Kalk Bay Theatre in March.

So, we are back, and I am happy. Come check us out. Every Monday. Galloway Theatre. 0729393351 to book.

Jumping in to 2015

I always try to do a little bit of something that makes me feel like I am setting the tone and standard for the new year on New Year’s Day, so yesterday I tried to learn some lines. I didn’t try very hard, or stick at it for too long, but I started, and today I’ll do a bit more. I am learning a monologue which I’ll perform on Monday night’s Playthings at The Alexander Bar. It’s one of the monologues from my yet to be staged play Clouds Like Waves. I have only ever done one other Playthings (because it’s on a Monday night and I am usually improvising with ImproGuise, but we only kick that off again on 12 Jan) but is the funnest, least stressful way of trying something out.

I am also trying to write my first radio play. When I say trying, I mean I have a really great kernel of an idea and I have written two scenes. Not sure that exactly qualifies but I like to think so. I will do some more later.

And then I am going to start turning my energy towards the end of the month and the next run of Violet Online at The Kalk Bay Theatre. I know it wasn’t that long ago that we did our premier run at The Alexander Bar, but the great thing for theatre makers is that Kalk Bay is considered to be another country, so we will be able to perform to those people there. And, I’ve got a feeling it’s the right play at the right place. I look forward to picking up that book again and having such fun playing with Lynita. Dates for the two week run are 27 Jan to 8 Feb.

Yup, feels like I am setting the tone.

Sweetest Same Time Next Year

One of the things I loved last night (at the opening of Bernard Slade’s play Same Time Next Year at the Kalk Bay Theatre) was what Simon Cooper said about this guy who saw this play (did he say 30 years ago?) and who loved it, and who has spent the last 10 years trying to get it onto stage. Then he said, “I am that guy and this is that play.”

But that wasn’t the only thing I loved about this completely charming, sweet and very funny play. I loved the (when I think about it it is quite ridiculous) idea of a married (to others) couple meeting for a weekend affair once a year for 25 years. I loved Chris Weare’s totally spot-on and immaculate directing. Because I see his work with students I know what an awesome teacher he is, but here, there is a certain freedom with working with Paul du Toit and Julie Hartley who are such professionals, and Chris’s directorial footprint is delicate but all over the piece. That’s probably because he also designed the production; a challenge because the play spans 25 years in the same space.

Mostly I loved Paul du Toit and Julie Hartley as George and Doris. Really, watching Paul is like watching a handsome Bob Newhart. He is quirky, hilarious and so, so funny and his timing is amazing. He makes us want to hang with George all the time, which is good, because that’s what the play is all about. Julie, as Doris, is totally different but as delicious. She is warm, sexy and lovely. I would also have fallen completely in love with her.

What is great about this production is that it embraces the fact that the play was obviously considered very modern when it was first performed in 1975, and as the audience we can’t help watching it with nostalgic, rose tinted glasses. This goes for its absolute Americanness too, which could have been a pain, but really wasn’t. That is helped by mostly very good accents by Paul and Julie.

To be honest, I can’t imagine anyone not loving, laughing through and enjoying Same Time Next Year. Catch it now at KBT, or in Grahamstown, at the festival.

Song And Dance Reviews

What the critics are saying. Artslink:

Kelly Lodewyks: Two would-be burglars break into an apartment that doesn’t quite meet their expectations.

It slowly dawns on them that this is not the apartment of the rich man they had targeted, and drama soon unfolds as the tenant returns home to find the pair of criminals in her house. So starts the comic Song & Dance written by theatre exponent extraordinaire Megan Furniss.

Currently running at the Kalk Bay Theatre, Song & Dance is a fast-paced slapstick look at crime in South Africa, which pokes fun at reality shows and local celebrities. It’s easy to sympathise with the characters as they expose their inner thoughts and vulnerabilities, and as they realise of each other that there is more than meets the eye. We even find ourselves rooting for these so-called bad guys as the show progresses and we come to recognise that everyone is simply doing what they can to get by in life.

The directorial debut of Ntombi Makhutshi (of London Road fame) Song & Dance sees Deon Nebulane, Anele Situlweni and Zondwa Njokweni deliver the three characters with such passion and conviction that when you see them after the show, it’s difficult to separate them from their roles.

The set, by contrast, is minimal with only a few furniture items and no dramatic backdrop or lighting. When sound is used, it is more than ample to put viewers right there in the room and in the shoes of the characters on stage.

Despite the comedy of the story, it hits close to home. It addresses very real issues, but in a light-hearted way. Thoughtful, creative and funny, Song & Dance serves to show that sometimes we are allowed to laugh when things go wrong. A very ‘South African’ piece, it nonetheless has the potential to cross international borders just as easily as it crosses race and language boundaries. This is a show that will appeal to everyone.

Song & Dance was runner up in the regional PANSA (Performing Arts Network of South Africa) playwriting competition and is on its way to the Grahamstown Arts Festival later this year. Catch it right now at the Kalk Bay Theatre.

And Clifford Graham from Monday Missile:

On it’s way to the National Arts Festival fringe in Grahamstown, where it is sure to be a hit, Megan Furniss’s new play Song and Dance has a preview run at the Kalk Bay Theatre. Given Megan Furniss’s impressive credentials as a theatre-maker, and sharp sense of comedy, it’s little wonder that this play is off to a good start.
A bungled burglary, two hapless would be thieves find themselves in the wrong apartment. The targeted victim lives next door! Instead, the current resident comes home to find the thieves scratching their heads at the lack of valuable pickings in her flat. This in itself  sets a scenario for much mirth, but soon things develop into an even more bizarre situation. From being caught red handed, what ensues is a hilarious look at life in South Africa. Even Gareth Cliff gets a mention. Ntombi Makhutshi directs an impressive ensemble in Anele Situlweni, Deon Nebulane and Zondwa Njokweni. I have to say I was amazed by Zondwa Njokweni’s antics in an impressive looking pair of heels. Anele Situlweni and  Deon Nebulane as the bungling burglars have enough home grown buffoonery in them to keep an audience laughing for Africa. Happily the comedy is contained making it all the more plausible. Song and Dance while being something of a dark comedy does provide an opportunity to see a typically South African issue in a different light.
Simon Cooper of KBT productions has done well to spot the potential of this play. It’s sure to do well wherever it is staged
Song and Dance may make you feel a little uncomfortable at times, given the regularity of house breaking in South Africa, but the comedy that ensues from the situation will keep you laughing long after the inevitable rousing applause.

The Song And Dance bridge

I hope I am not reading too much into last night’s Song And Dance audience. It was tiny, but it spanned the Cape Town demographic absolutely. White, coloured and black were the flavour of the 20 odd people who laughed, chuckled, guffawed and wheezed through the show, from beginning to end. I also sat there with a face splitting grin, and laughing my head off; I find this play completely hilarious.

But my inner delight is that it feels like this piece has transcended certain racial, cultural and language barriers, and can truly be enjoyed by all South Africans. This is the amazing achievement of the director and cast, whose style and interpretation of comedy is broad and deep. I don’t think I have ever seen performances quite like these; totally true to the material, totally original and creative, totally committed and enthusiastic and totally hilarious.

Don’t get me wrong. I think it is a massive challenge to sell this play. It needs to be said. A white, suburban theatre going audience does not generally choose to see a play with an all black cast. There is this vibe that it’s “not for them”. A black audience in Cape Town is rarer than hen’s teeth. Matched with the Kalk Bay Theatre being situated off the beaten track, it is a double challenge. And then coloured audiences in general seem to throw all their support at coloured work; Mark Lottering, Joe Barber, Loukman Adams.

But last night, all jumped into the pot. All. And we kicked back and laughed. Together.

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