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Sunday, March 6, 2016


(Jodie Simmans; Alexandra Elphick; Nombuliso Mkhize; S’Duduzo Ngubane & Rouxle Koekemoer)

The Theatre – St Anne’s College will present Susan Pam-Grant’s Curl Up and Dye directed by Lynn Chemaly.

Curl Up and Dye is a South African protest play set in a deteriorating hairdressing salon in Joubert Park, Johannesburg, in 1989. The comedy-drama highlights the plight of five diverse women experiencing the impact of a rapidly changing South Africa in the height of the Apartheid clampdown in the late 1980s. The script was intensely workshopped by the writer, together with the initial cast members, and enjoyed three return seasons at the Market Theatre after its initial run. Curl Up and Dye toured to the Edinburgh Festival and went on to play at the Tricycle Theatre in London.

“In the new millennium, 22 years after the birth of the new democratic South Africa, staging Curl Up and Dye might seem dated, and the era nostalgic, yet the story strongly highlights pertinent issues of race, gender and violence against women which continues to permeate our media, court rooms and South African and global culture,” says Chemaly.

“Suddenly 1980s South Africa becomes startlingly relevant. While the current influx of social media continues to fuel and ignite issues of racism and violence against women, generating mass mobilisation on one hand and overwhelming ignorance, prejudice and fear on the other, the simplicity with which race and gender is defined in 1989, and the clarity with which each character negotiates these relationships, is essentially what lies beneath the surface of our twenty-first century South African society,” she adds.

Curl Up and Dye features five prolific Matric Dramatic Arts learners - Alexandra Elphick; S’Duduzo Ngubane; Rouxle Koekemoer; Jodie Simmans, and Nombuliso Mkhize.

It promises to be an example of theatrical realism, complete with box set, running water, blowing hairdryers and real stage business. It serves as a time-piece in the South African theatrical tradition and offers insight into the fierce reality of current South African race and gender relations.

Curl Up and Dye runs in The Theatre – St Anne’s College, Hilton, from March 14 to 17 at 19h30. Tickets R60 (R40 concessions) booked through 033 343 6100 or Age Restriction: 14 years and over (High School children only) This play is not suitable for children at Primary School.