Winners of the 54th annual Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards were announced on Sunday 10 March 2019 at the Artscape Opera House in Cape Town. For more than five decades the Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards, together with Fleur du Cap Wines, have been honouring excellence in theatre at this theatrical event that is a highlight of the Mother City's cultural calendar.
Winners are chosen from productions performed at professional theatre venues in and around Cape Town. Theatre practitioners are recognised for their acting, directing, staging and technical abilities. Category winners receive R15 000 and a silver medallion.
A total of 87 diverse productions from the year under review were eligible for consideration. The awards, considered in 26 different categories, include an Award for Lifetime Achievement, which went to Saul Radomsky, and the Award for Innovation in Theatre which was handed to the Theatre Arts Admin Collective. These special awards were presented by the legendary David Kramer and trail-blazer Amy Jephta respectively. There was no Encore Award made this year.
The event was hosted in vintage style by Africa Melane who was supported by various co-presenters, all former recipients of the Award for Innovation in Theatre and the Encore Award: Ameera Conrad, Bongile Mantsai, Cleo Raatus, Hugo Theart, Jennie Reznek, Mandisi Sindo, Mandla Mbothwe, Marsanne Neethling, Megan Furniss, Paul Griffiths, Sihle Mnqwazana, Tankiso Mamabolo, Thami Mbongo and Zoleka Helesi. The glamorous audience included theatre-makers, producers, actors, past award recipients, dignitaries and Fleur du Cap wine brand representatives.
The awards ceremony was directed by Mbongeni N Mtshali, Fleur du Cap Theatre Award recipient for Best New Director in 2016. The entertainment on stage unfolded under the musical direction of José Dias, who performed together with Nomfundo Xaluva, Dr Dizu Plaatjies, Sibonele Dance Group, the Township Opera Company, the University of Stellenbosch Jazz Band and Zip Zap Circus.
The evening concluded in elegant style with guests enjoying a celebratory Fleur du Cap night cap and desserts.
The judging process for 2018 was chaired by non-voting chairperson, Melanie Burke, and the judges for the 2018 productions were Africa Melane, Dr Beverley Brommert, Eugene Yiga, Lwando Scott, Marina Griebenow, Maurice Carpede, Peggy Mongoato, Tracey Saunders and Dr Wayne Muller. Voting is done by secret ballot, and all processes are strictly overseen and audited by Distell Internal Audit and the legal firm Cluver Markotter Inc.
The full list of winners is as follows:
AWARD FOR MOST PROMISING STUDENT
Nancy Sekhokoane (AFDA)
BEST THEATRE PRODUCTION FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE
Vlooi en die Musiekfabriek/Kipper and the Music Factory (Marinda Engelbrecht & Margit Meyer-Rödenbeck)
BEST NEW SOUTH AFRICAN SCRIPT
Kudu by Lwanda Sindaphi
BEST NEW DIRECTOR
BEST PERFORMANCE IN A REVUE, CABARET OR ONE-PERSON SHOW
Rehane Abrahams in Womb of Fire in Various Roles
BEST PERFORMANCE BY A SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A MUSICAL OR MUSIC THEATRE SHOW
Msizi Njapha in Tsotsi the Musical as Boston
BEST PERFORMANCE BY A SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL OR MUSIC THEATRE SHOW
Bethany Dickson in Matilda the Musical as Miss Honey
BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ENSEMBLE
The cast of Kudu
BEST PERFORMANCE BY A LEAD ACTOR IN A MUSICAL OR MUSIC THEATRE SHOW
Ryan de Villiers in Matilda the Musical as Miss Trunchbull
BEST PERFORMANCE BY A LEAD ACTRESS IN A MUSICAL OR MUSIC THEATRE SHOW
Carmen Pretorius in The Sound of Music as Maria Rainer
BEST LIGHTING DESIGN
Gareth Hewitt Williams for The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
BEST SET DESIGN
Rob Howell for Matilda the Musical
BEST PUPPETRY DESIGN
Janni Younge for the Baby in Tsotsi the Musical
BEST COSTUME DESIGN
Andrea van der Kuil & Sue Steele for Curse of the Starving Class
BEST SOUND DESIGN, ORIGINAL MUSIC COMPOSITION OR ORIGINAL SCORE
Lukhanyiso Skosana for Womb of Fire for Original Music Performance
BEST PERFORMANCE IN AN OPERA – MALE
Bongani Kubheka in Don Pasquale as Don Pasquale
BEST PERFORMANCE IN AN OPERA – FEMALE
Janelle Visagie in La Voix Humaine as Elle
BEST PERFORMANCE BY A SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A PLAY
Richard September in Swerfgoed in Various Roles
BEST PERFORMANCE BY A SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A PLAY
Nicole Holm in Swerfgoed as Aegistha
BEST PERFORMANCE BY A LEAD ACTRESS IN A PLAY
Anna-Mart van der Merwe in Swerfgoed as Esta
BEST PERFORMANCE BY A LEAD ACTOR IN A PLAY
Andrew Buckland in Endgame as Hamm
Sylvaine Strike for Endgame
Endgame (Baxter Theatre & Derek Lubner)
INNOVATION IN THEATRE
Theatre Arts Admin Collective