Press: Shaping scripts with the fourth SCrIBE Scriptwriting Competition

September 17, 2015

The five finalists of the 2015 SCrIBE Scriptwriting Competition have been announced.  The event takes place from 28 September to 2 October at the Garrick Theatre, Waterfront Theatre School.


Produced by the Imbewu Trust and now in its fourth year, SCrIBE is a national competition which provides the opportunity for playwrights to develop their work, with three major prizes to be won.


The top five entrants have their scripts presented at staged readings under professional direction.  The writers then have the opportunity of post-reading discussions and feedback with the audience. The overall winner will have their play professionally produced at a Cape Town theatre in 2016. A second will be able to have his or her script further developed, with a third prize of the Scribblers Dream, a chance to work alongside a mentor to develop their writing style.


The readings take place between 28 September and 1 October at 7pm, with the winners announced at the awards ceremony on 2 October at 7.30pm. The event once again form part of the popular Cape Town Fringe festival.


The finalists are: Kimberley Buckle’s The Jasmine Ghost; Tamara Guhrs’ Thin Air; 4(Vier) by Francois Joubert; Killing Jonathan by Lee Doubell and Terence Makapan’s Him. I. Her.


When the ghosts of your past make an appearance in your present and you come face to face with the demons hiding in the light – Kimberley Buckle’s  The Jasmine Ghost is a play about a suicide and the domino effect that ensues.


Thin Air by Tamara Guhrs is set near the South Luangwa National in Zambia. It explores the often complex relationship between nature, people and the legacy of our colonial past. The play is part love story, part ghost story and part family drama.


Francois Joubert’s 4(Vier) is a drama based on the Waterkloof Vier scandal. It looks at corruption as well as the deconstruction of white-Afrikaans masculinity and white privilege.


Lee Doubell’s Killing Jonathan is a revenge thriller set in the heart of the Stellenbosch farmlands. A Professor and a reformed Cape Flats gangster meet. During the course of a tense hour, deeply buried secrets are revealed. Will the act of revenge happen or will the intended victim be able to negotiate his way out of this very tight spot? 


Him. I. Her. by Terence Makapan reviews what goes through a mind in the minutes after you have killed someone? How does the act of taking another human being’s life impact on a person’s psychology?


“We again received scripts addressing a wide range of themes this year,” says Samantha de Romijn, co-founder of the Imbewu Trust. “Each of the finalists is already a winner, having the opportunity to bring their script to life, to see how they may wish to further adapt it for a stage production. Previous finalists have even resent their scripts to us, just for feedback following the readings, which delights us, as SCrIBE was initiated to create a forum for writers to nurture their work, however we can assist.”  


The Imbewu Trust is a non-profit organisation which was established to promote the development of contemporary South African theatre and arts and to help showcase it on an international stage. It seeks to create an accessible community of varied voices that can flourish through collaboration, resourcefulness and innovation. The Trust created the SCrIBE Scriptwriting competition to provide new opportunities for local writers to fully develop their work and have a platform to feel supported in the evolution of their script.


The 2014 SCrIBE winner, Joanna Evans, will have her play Four Small Gods produced by the Imbewu Trust at Magnet Theatre from 30 October to 10 November.

Other previous entrants have gone on to rework their text as a result of the open readings and some on to professional runs.  Menzi Mkhwane was the 2014 recipient of the script development award for his play Last Cow Standing. His prize was to work with Standard Bank Young Artist Neil Coppen, and Mkhwane’s revised script will be produced at the Cape Town Fringe festival this year.   


Criteria for the 2015 competition were that the scripts should be in English, no longer than 40 pages or 80 minutes long and with a maximum of five cast members. The Imbewu Trust and judges were looking for original content of outstanding quality that share the diverse range of South African stories. The panel of SCrIBE judges comprises a group of seasoned theatre practitioners.


The SCrIBE Scriptwriting Competition readings will take place from 28 September to 1 October at 7pm at the Garrick Theatre at the Waterfront Theatre School (Port Road, Cape Town).  The awards ceremony will take place on Friday 2 October at 7.30pm. 


Tickets cost R50 and R45 for concessions. 

Bookings can be made at    

Ample parking is available next to the venue.



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