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Monday, July 6, 2015


(Suanne Braun as Alison)

(Reviews from the artSMart team currently in Grahamstown at the 2015 National Arts Festival)

Poignant theatre bringing life to a real story. (Review by Thomie Holtzhausen)

Based on the real life story of Alison Botha who was brutally attacked and raped 20 years ago in Port Elizabeth and left for dead, the play beautifully recollects a tale of absolute power, determination and gratitude.

The story has been covered many times in the media coupled with Alison Botha’s motivational talks around the globe. A stage adaptation of the book on Alison’s journey by Marianne Thamm almost seemed like unnecessary and outdated. Maralin Vanrenen’s adaptation, however, is brilliant and offers captivating theatre.

Suanne Braun as Alison is remarkable. Having attended one of Alison’s talks in the past, I at times felt as if it was Alison herself on stage. Shaeleen Tobin skilfully adds comic relief in this sombre production as a variety of characters. The male characters were less believable and were only carried by a strong script. The horrible wigs also did not help.

A beautiful and effective set design by Dennis Hutchinson supports Vanrenen’s hand and Jemma Kahn’s costumes are spot-on. - Thomie Holtzhausen

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