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PRESS: Acclaimed DIE MOEDER, starring Sandra Prinsloo, at the Baxter this April

Fahiem Stellenboom

 

The multi-award-winning Afrikaans drama, Die Moeder (with English surtitles), starring  Sandra Prinsloo, directed by Christiaan Olwagen, at The Baxter, from 12 to 29 April 2023.

The highly acclaimed Afrikaans drama, Die Moeder, with Sandra Prinsloo and a stellar cast, directed by Christaan Olwagen, comes to The Baxter for a limited season, from 12 to 29 April 2023, at 7.30pm with Saturday matinees at 3.30pm.

 

Celebrated director of films such as Kanarie and Poppie Nongena, Olwagen, returns to his first love - theatre. He has translated the original work, The Mother, into Afrikaans (with English surtitles) and has transposed the events to contemporary South Africa.

 

It is a compelling portrait of empty nest syndrome by award-winning playwright Florian Zeller, who also wrote The Father. The film version of The Father won Academy Awards for Best Actor (Anthony Hopkins) and Best Adapted Screenplay.

 

Die Moeder debuted at the 2022 Toyota SU Woordfees and according to Netwerk24's national arts editor, Laetitia Pople, this shift is so recognisable that it could just as well have taken place here. She said, “Every mother is going to identify with Die Moeder. ... A brilliant production … It shows once again the calibre of our artists.”

 

On her blog, De Beer Necessities, seasoned theatre critic, Diane de Beer, writes that although Christiaan Olwagen's success as a film director is remarkable, it is always his theatre work that impresses her the most. She explains, “It feels as if it is a medium that he fully understands, where he feels at home, and where his vision translates magnificently.”

Sandra Prinsloo plays the role of Anna who is unable to come to terms with the realisation that motherhood, as she has known it, is over. Her children have grown up and have lives and loves of their own. She spends hours alone and the world seems to tilt around her. Is her husband really having an affair? Did her favoured son really come home? Or has the loneliness driven Anna to madness?

 

De Beer raves about her performance, saying "Prinsloo slips under her character’s skin (and yours) and more in a performance that simply surpasses everything she has done before (and there were some great ones). But this was next level and for this gracious actor, a just reward for years and years of hard work.”

 

Prinsloo is joined on stage by legendary South African actor Dawid Minnaar (7de Laan, Binnelanders), Ludwig Binge (Balbesit, Johnny is nie dood nie) and Ashley de Lange (Bad Jews).

 

“Binge, Prinsloo, Olwagen and his technical team spin a theatrical dance that will be remembered for a long time. A dance of unforgettable oblivion,” writes Machelle van Zyl in INK.

 

Die Moeder was awarded three kykNET Fiestas this year - Best Festival Production; Best Director and Best Performance in a Leading Role (Sandra Prinsloo) - and received five Woodtrofees awards.

 

Die Moeder runs at the Baxter Flipside from 12 to 29 April at 7.30pm, with Saturday matinees at 3.30pm. Booking is through Webtickets or at Pick n Pay stores. For block and schools’ bookings or fundraisers, contact Leon van Zyl on leon.vanzyl@uct.ac.za or Carmen Kearns on carmen.kearns@uct.ac.za.

 

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