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PRESS: Award-winning SHADOW BOXING returns to the Baxter for a short run

Baxter Theatre Centre


Following its successful run at The Baxter last year, Shadow Boxing, with Daniel Newton, directed by Mdu Kweyama, returns to the Baxter's Masambe Theatre for a short season, from 24 to 29 July 2023.

The powerful one-hander, Shadow Boxing, written by James Gaddas, returns to the Baxter Masambe Theatre, from 24 to 29 July 2023, pairing the award-winning director Mdu Kweyama and emerging talent, Daniel Newton.

Newton received the Fleur du Cap Best Performance in a Revue, Cabaret or One-person Show, earlier this year, for his performance as Flynn in the production. Following its run at The Baxter, the production will transfer to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland in August.

The coming-of-age story deals with the demons of the past and discovering of one’s identity. Flynn is a young boxer, the son of a professional boxer whose career never really took off. Unlike his father, Flynn is determined to become a successful, professional boxer. In doing so, he must fight off his inherited perceptions of masculinity as he discovers his own identity. He thrusts himself into a gruelling training regime to avoid his internal struggle.

Media24 wrote, “Shadow Boxing tackles universal and relevant themes … intense, emotionally loaded, relevant and stinging … Newton is a talented young actor and certainly one to look out for in the future.”

While Theatre Scene Cape Town praised Newton for his "clear understanding of the depth and nuance this play demands. The impact is comparable to someone hitting an emotionally exposed nerve with impressive precision: rapid, true and memorable."

Call of the Search said, “Daniel Newton’s performance as Flynn, the broken boxer, is riveting … Authentic and compelling throughout … Shadow Boxing is a triumph for Newton, an exceptional new talent, and director Mdu Kwyama.” The Cape Robyn agreed, saying, "this is a mighty impressive professional theatre debut … An excellent play; excellent performance by Daniel Newton; excellent direction by Mdu Kweyama. There are a lot of 'excellents' in there".

Kweyama, artistic director of the award-winning Baxter Zabalaza Theatre Festival was awarded the Naledi award for Best Actor in a Lead Role and Best Original Choreography for Karoo Moose in 2008. His directing accolades at The Baxter include Most Honest Man, Reza De Wet’s Missing, Woza Albert and Edward Albee’s The Goat, or who is Sylvia?. His direction of the Newton’s budding talent is the perfect fit.

Newton, a promising actor, writer and musician, completed his BA Honours in Drama and Acting at the University of Cape Town in 2021. While he started acting for film in 2016, Shadow Boxing marked his first professional theatrical performance in 2022. In 2023 he performed in Louis Viljoen’s, The Visigoths and before that, wrote and directed, The Rangers, which received great acclaim from audiences and critics.

The son of a wrestler, playwright James Gaddas is an English actor and writer. He is well-known for his roles in Starter for 10, Jonathan Creek and Bad Girls. He has appeared in Billy Elliot the Musical, Peter Pan, Spamalot and in Mamma Mia! in London. He has also made appearances on The Bill, Between the Lines, Tracy Beaker Returns, Medics, Dogtown, Doctors, Waterloo Road, Emmerdale, The Girls, Hollyoaks and Coronation Street.

Shadow Boxing runs at the Baxter Masambe Theatre from 24 to 29 July 2023. Tickets are available through Webtickets online or at any Pick n Pay stores.

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