Neither the Minstrels nor the Satin To Sequins show is new to Cape Town —both have carved out a place for themselves as proudly Capetonian. The show gives audiences a glimpse behind the minstrel tradition as it follows the trials, tribulations, and triumphs of the Woodstock Darlings troupe. Audiences were first introduced to this production and ‘Die Darlings’ in 2014 with a staging at the Joseph Stone Auditorium. Now this Oddball Concepts presented show graces the Baxter Concert Hall stage in 2018 —fresh and reworked— and places the focus on the stories about the people in the satin suits… because they are more than just minstrel performers.
The characters may be fictional, but the emotions and team spirit that give this ‘Tweede Nuwe Jaar’ inspired tale its magical appeal is very real. Satin To Sequins – More Than A Minstrel reveals how ‘Die Darlings’ function as a family, embracing the ‘all for one and one for all’ life that keeps the minstrel culture alive. In highlighting the strong element of support, this musical show not only entertains audiences, but also enlighten those who don’t generally understand the level of commitment, sacrifice, and passion that go along with this tradition.
Under the guidance of writer and director Alistair Izobell, with the assistance of co-writer Riyaad Peters and choreographer Zakhele Nkosi, this production celebrates the diversity-embracing-spirit of the minstrel community —addressing prejudices and ignorance-based stigmas one inspirational ghoema-beat at a time. It takes the original Oddball Concepts developed tale and presents it as a celebration of memories, where the past meets the present.
Carlos Daniels (Carlo Biggs Jr, the leader of ‘Die Darlings’) and Carmen Maarman (Ivy Biggs) complement each other as performers. Their portrayal of their characters bring an emotive and personal element to the love-conquers-all storyline that not only tests the strength of relationships, but also impacts on the competition preparation of the Woodstock Darlings. Between money problems and minstrel accessory sales, you find the story-within-the-story of people who truly care about each other.
Every one of ‘Die Darlings’ (including the exceptional band) give their all in this show. Ashtevahnn Mintoor who plays Blinx Hector will give your goosebumps goosebumps when you hear him sing. In additional to the stellar voices on show, the comedic element of ‘Die Darling’-journey is strongly influenced and elevated by the charming antics of Tashreeq de Villiers (Rowan Pietersen), Ashur Petersen (Sheroz Fortune), Shadley Shroeder (Saatjie Diedericks) and Junaid Isaacs (Michael Fillis) —they all do their very likeable characters justice. The guys give each other a hard time entertainingly bickering like siblings, but also stand ready to support one another in troubled times.
The Woodstock Darlings' story at the centre of Satin To Sequins – More Than A Minstrels will see you laughing with delight, but when you experience the show you soon realise that the funny is informed by a lot of heart. True comradery is what ‘Die Darlings’ bring to the stage.
The production is a fun Afrikaans-English musical that will see you leave the Baxter Concert Hall with the biggest smile on your face and your feet still dancing along to the ghoema-beat. Book your tickets through Webtickets to see Satin To Sequins – More Than A Minstrels before run ends 14 July 2018.