Press Release: The Swell

November 20, 2014

The Swell is the story of two unusual characters who meet under even stranger circumstances. Marie Walters identifies as a mermaid, and when she makes a medical aid claim for the loss of her tail it's up to the company’s Strange Claims officer, Howard Fawls, to track down the reclusive Marie and investigate. Did her tail ever exist at all? This encounter raises and interrogates  questions of how bodies, both tangible and fantastical, are treated in contemporary South Africa.

The Swell is piece of magical realism, which takes the audience into the realm of possibility where identity can be altered or edited; fantasy can be indulged in; and the lines between fact and fiction can be distorted. Grounded in the mythology of mermaids and fantastical sea creatures, The Swell explores ideas of loss and transformation.

Two houses, both alike in dignity, have collaborated to produce the fantastical new theatre production, The Swell. The two emerging Cape Town based theatre companies, Horses’ Heads Productions and Fruitzalad Productions, both share a vision of theatrical originality, excellence, and a spirit of collaboration.

The four producers, Genna Gardini and Gary Hartley of Horses’ Heads Productions, and Shaun Acker and Zanne Solomon of Fruitzalad Productions, have combined their individual theatre experience to create this refreshing piece of theatre. Trained at the Rhodes University Department of Drama, the producers forged an ethos of theatrical ownership which lies at the heart of producing work in collaboration. This approach to the creation of theatre ruptures the traditional theatre hierarchy by involving all team members (performers, writer, director etc) as producers of the production, which engenders the spirit of ownership and excellence.


The Swell is showing at Alexander Upstairs until 5 December 2014 and tickets can be book online at R90 per person.


Press release provided by Alexander Upstairs.

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