One-Act Play Festival showcases local writers

The team in rehearsal for Tommy and Dominick, which will be presented at The Masque's One-Act Play Festival. Picture: Supplied

The team in rehearsal for Tommy and Dominick, which will be presented at The Masque's One-Act Play Festival. Picture: Supplied

Published Feb 28, 2024


The Masque Theatre in Muizenberg is gearing up to promote the work of local writers in Cape Town, through its festival of South African plays at the One-Act Play Festival.

Four new South African productions will be presented as part of the festival which takes place from March 14 -16.

Creating an opportunity for audiences to experience the premiere of fresh stories, the festival gives authors an affordable platform to present their work.

The programme features Inheritance by Dawn Garisch; Let’s Get Meta by Robin Hoole; Tommy and Dominick by Lauren Bates, and Wrong Faces by Alex Silberbauer.

Festival Director Melanie Horn. Picture: Supplied

One-Act Play Festival director, Melanie O’Connor Horn, said a number of the texts were developed through The Masque’s staged reading process following a call that was put out last year for new scripts.

“These readings were followed by amazingly supportive and productive discussions of the work.

“Mounting a new production can be a daunting and expensive process, so we are delighted that The Masque has created this festival, enabling our playwrights to have the space to evolve their text and bring the story alive from page to stage.

“It has been very exciting to watch the plays evolve from a simple reading to properly staged productions.

“The addition of sound effects and choreographed movements have injected extra vitality into the plays.

“Performances are more nuanced because actors have had more time to prepare. Many of those who read parts during the initial readings have been replaced by new actors, who have brought interesting new interpretations.”

Jason Bailey and Alex Silberbauer in rehearsal for Wrong Face. Picture: Supplied

Faeron Wheeler, head of programming at the theatre, said: “Being able to engage with and enjoy new work hot-off-the-press always feels like a VIP experience.

“South Africa has many original stories to share, so we are proud to be able to produce these four new texts. It’s also wonderful that we have established names among our line-up, as well as names that will become the established names of tomorrow – and you saw them first at The Masque.”

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Tommy and Dominick could be described as a lighthearted Romeo and Juliet and Wrong Faces explores themes of vulnerability, intimacy, platonic love and the kindness of strangers.

Tickets to the festival are available for R120 via Quicket. Visit The Masque website.

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Cape Argus