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Sunday, September 11, 2022


The Hilton Arts Festival runs from September 23 to 25, 2022, at Hilton College in Hilton. There is a wide variety of events, many of them free.

These are the shows in the drama and comedy programme. All booking through Quicket:


James – AKA funny man Aaron McIlroy - is a red-blooded meat-eating South African man. He is aware of the insistent concerns about the meat industry’s role in the impending climate catastrophe. He has done his best to ignore such concerns until a work trip creates an unexpected double whammy and he is shaken out of his comfort zone.

He becomes a vegetarian and his new lifestyle does not fit well into his meat-eating family. The skirmishes at home escalate into a full-blown war when James, who only a few months before, had been the king of the Braai, demands an entirely meat-free home.

Written and directed by Craig Freimond

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 14h30, Sunday 25 at 14h25 (running time: 55 minutes)

Venue: Memorial Hall

Tickets: R170



South African Comedian, Alfred Adriaan brings his highly anticipated, laugh-a-minute show to the Hilton Festival, off the back of a completely sold-out tour across South Africa, Australia and London. Alfred and his wife had to spend a little more time together than they would have liked during the pandemic, but Alfred made the most of this time, raking in thousands of viewers with his highly relatable and hilarious vlogs keeping many South African’s entertained during lockdown. His new show promises to be relatable and a little nostalgic.

"From digital farts to koeksisters and his thrifty wife, Hankey, Alfred’s topics are highlights for many South Africans during lockdown" - The Herald

"Hilariously funny, energetic and relatable" – The Citizen "Adriaan's take on life will have you in stitches"- Jacaranda FM

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 20h00 (Running Time 60 minutes)

Venue: ZAR Comedy Tent

Tickets: R 165



Rob van Vuuren, John Vlismas, Alfred Adriaan and Costa Carastavrakis. Send four funny men to a festival. Four walks of life, four wildly different stories – one common purpose: make ‘em laugh. Put them on stage and let the audience ask them anything. Let them ask each other anything. Sixty minutes, no limits. This insightful and often hysterical show is highly interactive and unique every time it happens. Rob’s physical expression, Costa’s ability to choose words, Alfred’s undeniable warmth and candour and Vlismas’ signature gravitation to the edge, all combine to create a novel and engaging hour of comedy that takes the audience behind the curtain to peek at what makes these performers tick. What they do for fun – how they feel about you - and how they amuse themselves. Book soon – one show only.

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 12h00 (Duration 60 minutes)

Venue: ZAR Comedy Tent

Tickets: R165



John Vlismas has taken a few years off from comedy to go back to school, do some soul-searching and renew his vows to a mentally-well life. This show is his first solo stand-up show since his sabbatical began. It’s a roller-coaster ride designed to bring you up to speed on where we are as life’s leading life form. With loads of research slotted in between hilarious material and profound insights, this show has had audiences gobsmacked to find out that deep learning can occur while belly-laughing. Never mind what Google tells you, come and find out what kind of animals we really are; how clever and limited the brain can be; and how forming opinions is becoming less and less our own doing. ApeX will give you enough facts to be the most interesting and funny person at the next two braais at least.

Dates/Times: Friday 23 at 18h00; Saturday 24 at 14h00 and 18h00 (Duration 60 minutes)

Venue: ZAR Comedy Tent

Tickets: R165



It is 1970. An elderly man reluctantly returns to the place that gave him lifelong nightmares. Delville Wood. David Wells fought in the Battle in 1916, as a 19-year old lad, and the carnage he witnessed led to his unsuccessful attempts to block the battle from his mind in the intervening 54 years. Now he realises it is time to face his nightmares head-on, and he travels back to the Wood. In this powerful piece of Solo Theatre, Peter Terry performs in his own play, directed by the internationally acclaimed theatre director, Janice Honeyman. “… a masterpiece of both writing and performance.” - Vincent Carruthers; “… this work, with its crisp and tight language, with its descriptions so bold and direct that you can smell the stench of war and see the birds on the wing in a virgin forest, reaches into the heart of everyman.” – Robyn Sassen.

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 12h15 and 20h00, Sunday 25 at 12h30 (Duration 50 minutes)

Venue: Drama Centre

Tickets: R150



A passionate tale of moon-crossed love, betrayal, revenge, and desire brilliantly told by theatre legends, Andrew Buckland and Sylvaine Strike. This exceptional clowning duo, accompanied by Tony Bentel on piano, is directed by Toni Morkel. They deliver performances that will move, thrill and delight. An unforgettable journey into the underbelly of wonder, in all its awful splendour. This is the world of Firefly.

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 10h00 and 17h30, Sunday 25 at 10h00 (Duration 70 minutes)

Venue: Theatre

Tickets: R 200



A children’s African folk tale, created by director and Naledi award-winning actor, Menzi Mkhwane. It tells the story of little Amara who comes from the Village of Azibo. Inside the Forest of Azibo a big factory is cutting down more trees to make more paper for Mr Shima. He wants to cut more trees so the factory can grow but it will destroy the forest! The Spirits of Azibo choose Amara to save the forest by fighting Mr Shima, by using powers that come from Mother Nature.

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 11h00, Sunday 25 at 12h30 (Duration 45 minutes)

Venue: Wild Garden Open Air (there will be a wet weather plan)

Tickets: R100



Join Aaron McIlroy and Lisa Bobbert for their newest comedy super nova Go Big - for laughs so large they can only be captured by satellite image. If there was ever a time when laughter was needed it is now and Aaron and Lisa deliver to the max in this side-splitting new production. Directed by the irrepressible Daisy Spencer, Go Big has a money-back guarantee for anyone who leaves the venue not having laughed out loud three times and fallen off their chairs twice. YES! New and improved, 3.0, hilarity at its best.

Dates/Times: Friday 23 at 20h00, Saturday 24 at 20h00 (Duration 70 minutes)

Venue: Hilton College Theatre

Tickets: R200



This play about the plight of the rhino was created in the 80s by Nicholas Ellenbogen. An extraordinary piece of physical theatre, accompanied by dialogue in English and isiZulu, won numerous national and international awards.

Telling the story of the plight of the rhino it is seen - comically - from the perspective of a Vulture, the storyteller, as well as from the point of view of poachers and local communities who see poaching as a means to earn money, rather than its causing the destruction, not only of South Africa’s natural heritage, but also fatal damage to the tourist industry.

The current production features Menzi Mkhwane, Mpilo “Straw” Nzimande, Mthokozisi Zulu, Nkosikhona Dube, Asanda Khathi, and Kaylee McIlroy and was directed by Brendan Grealy.


Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 15h00, Sunday 25 at 11h25

Venue: Wild Garden Open Air (there will be a wet weather plan)

Tickets: R120



A coming-of-age story about mothers, daughters, and volcanic islands. It’s less a family tree, more a family houseplant that’s grown too big for its pot! After a couple of generations, the roots start to get a bit knotty. This story follows an 18-year-old girl who visits her ancestral home, Mauritius. A trip to a tropical island to connect with her extended family (and to have some fun away from her mother) gets too real as she uncovers the dark history and realises that underneath paradise, a volcano is still waiting to erupt. “It’s a hell of a play. The writing is superb. It’s fast, funny, and able to turn on a dime” - Dave Mann. Winner of the 2022 Standard Bank Gold Ovation, Ile is written and performed by Sophie Joans, directed by Rob van Vuuren and produced by Spark in the Dark.

Dates/Times: Friday 23 at 20h00, Saturday 24 at 17h00, Sunday 25 at 10h00 (Duration 55 minutes)

Venue: Memorial Hall

Tickets: R150



A new show about the aftermath of the apocalypse. Rob van Vuuren is a South African comedy legend. He is the recipient of the Comics Choice Breakthrough Act Award and five Standard Bank Ovation Awards as well as many other accolades. His 20-year career has taken him to stages all over the world. After two of the toughest years of his (and everyone else’s) life, Rob takes a brutally honest look at the pandemic and some of the more harrowing and hilarious experiences he endured during the end of the world. Come watch Rob unpack motivation, separation, dating, hijacking, Ayahuasca and other near-death experiences in a side-splitting comedy against all odds.

Dates/Times: Friday 23 at 20h00, Saturday 24 at 16h00, Sunday 25 at 11h30 (Duration 60 minutes)

Venue: ZAR Comedy Tent

Tickets: R165



The Ugly Noo Noo, featuring the infamous Parktown Prawn, rocked the theatre world in 1988. Playwright Andrew Buckland consequently became a legend in South African theatre. Now, 30 years later, it has not lost any of its power, as it deftly and humorously shows how fear can be used to manipulate, dominate, exploit and destroy. A slice of South African history interwoven with comedy …. after all, it stars a sort of a cockroach!

This production showcases the high energy technical skill of its performer, Mpilo ‘Straw’ Nzimande. Nzimande has become a commanding presence in KZN theatre with his extraordinary performances in Woza Albert, Master Harold and the Boys, Feedback, Hamlet and Othello. Directed by Peter Mitchell, whose production of Coetzee’s The Blue Period of Milton van der Spuy won a Silver Ovation Award at the National Arts Festival.

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 17h30, Sunday 25 at 14h30 (Duration 70 minutes)

Venue: Drama Centre

Tickets: R40



Meet Bill, Mathematician, cricket enthusiast and World War 2 veteran who will tell you that he can hear the call of the moon and that everything has its own sound, even gravity. He will tell you too, of his endless desire to live weightless and not to be afraid of falling. And of his special relationship with the moon and how he hopes that he can make use of the light that reflects off him to find his way through the pain of being different. He will tell you that the algebra of kindness is a formula; and of his wish for it to be taught in every classroom, boardroom and sports field.

Featuring Ralph Lawson, written and directed by Michael Taylor-Broderick.

Dates/Times: Friday 23 at 20h00, Saturday 24 at 10h00 and 15h00, Sunday 25 at 10h00 (Duration 60 minutes)

Venue: Drama Centre

Tickets: R140



A love letter to the thrilling acrobatics of big city life! A talented troupe of Johannesburg's hottest circus artistes will take the audience on a wheel-spinning, nail-biting, day-dreaming escapade through the city. Urban Circus shows the city's inhabitants as they strive, survive and thrive in a delicate and dextrous dance through the intoxicating frenzy of urban life. It is brought to you by an exciting collaboration between the brilliant Jozi circus company, The Cirk, and well-known physical theatre practitioner and Cirque du Soleil alumnus, Daniel Buckland.

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 12h15, Sunday 25 at 12h15 (Duration 65 minutes)

Venue: Hilton College Theatre

Tickets: R200



Winner of a Standard Bank Silver Ovation Award and directed by Rob Murray and Quintijn Relouw, Whistleblowers tackles the themes of GBV and sexual assault through the lens of a field hockey match. It is the final game of the season, and the championship title is on the line. But the stakes are much higher, as the play reveals back-stories that the young women have been experiencing. As the lines between the game and social commentary start blurring, and the team finds a collective voice of anger at the plight of women in this country, the team needs to make a vital choice: attack or defend.

“It is a solid team, well directed with touches of physical comedy reining in the didactic, with imaginative use of set and wonderful touches of mask work…Whistleblowers is a winning work.” – CUE

Dates/Times: Saturday 24 at 10h00 and 12h15, Sunday 25 at 12h30 (Duration 60 minutes)

Venue: Memorial Hall

Tickets: R140



Festival Entry Fee:

Please note that there is an entrance fee of R100 per vehicle which is valid for all three days. You will be given a ticket on entry which you will need to take to Info or Box Office (both clearly marked). When you have paid you will be given an exit pass, valid for the duration. This income will assist cover the costs of Festival infrastructure

 For more information, click on the Hilton Arts Festival logo to the right of this article which will link you to the festival website.