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The Market Theatre Foundation scoops 27 Naledi Theatre Awards nominations

The Market Theatre Foundation scooped 27 nominations across various categories when the Naledi Theatre Awards now in its 17th year announced the 2019 nominations on Sunday 12 April 2020.

“The Market Theatre Foundation’s artistic success is testimony to our absolute commitment for artistic excellence and for promoting original South African stories that critically reflect on our past, anchor us to the present and offer us a visionary hope for the future”, said Zama Buthelezi, the Brand & Communications Manager of the Market Theatre Foundation.

The slate of nominations includes the Market Theatre’s mainstream productions which have been carefully curated and presented by the artistic director, James Ngcobo, productions presented by the Market Theatre Laboratory under the artistic-education leadership of Clara Vaughan, the head of the Market Theatre Laboratory and as well as productions from the Windybrow Arts Centre under the leadership of Keitu Gwangwa.

 Strange Lands which unfolded the repressed memory about Tsafendas written by Anton Krueger starring Renos Spanoudes walked away with four nominations for Best New South African Script, Best Set Design, Best New South African Script and Best Solo Performance in a production female/male.

Another production that has its roots rooted in history was Van Wyk – the Storyteller of Riverlea, created and performed by well-known South African actor, Zane Meas, and directed by Christo Davids based on Chris van Wyk’s writings. The production was nominated for the Best New Script and Best Lead Performance Male.

2019 saw Artistic Director James Ngcobo venture into new terrains with the launch of the African Continental Season. The season aims to curate African works from the diaspora. Last year, audiences saw two diverse work The Fishermen and Frontiers.  Both these pioneering productions also received nominations. The Fishermen received a nomination for the Best Director of Play and the two actors have been nominated for the Best Lead Performance.

Venus vs Modernity written by an award-winning author, presenter, producer, and actress best known for her fiery poetry which has captivated audiences in 26 countries, Lebo Mashile, co-directed by Pamela Nomvete and Koleka Putuma was nominated for Best Breakthrough Performance, Best Director of Play, Best Original Score and Best Lead Performance.

Currently (G)old and Rhinoceros performed by the Kwasha! Theatre Company also received nominations. The theatre company is a collaboration between the Market Theatre Laboratory and the Windybrow Arts Centre. Rhinoceros is written by celebrated French-Romanian playwright Eugène Ionesco.

Eclipsed was nominated for Best Production Incubator. The production was based on the tragedy of Life Esidimeni. The production was created by first year students at the Market Theatre Laboratory directed by Sylvaine Strike.

This recognition for the Kwasha! theatre company and the Market Theatre Laboratory students affirms the quality of the graduates that come from the school. The school contributes to one of the largest growing industries in the world today, entertainment.

Several productions presented by the Market Theatre and which were funded by the Department of Sports, Arts & Culture’s Incubation programme also scooped nominations. Frontières written and mentored by Bobby Rodwell was directed by Mmabatho Montsho. Niq Mhlongo’s Nailed was directed by Luthando Mngomezulu mentored by Mpho J. Both productions received nomination for the Best Production Incubator Theatre.

Ekasi Lam was nominated for Best New South African Script written by Jefferson Tshabalala, a rising multi-talented artist who is currently in a residency with the Market Theatre Foundation. Tshabalala is also the 2020 Standard Bank Young Artist award winner for theatre.

Other intriguing works that received important nominations are the award-winning script No Easter Sunday For Queers by Koleka Putuma and Tswalo, a body of poems constructed to fragment a narrative that is carried in both physicality and voice. The latter production was created by Theatre Duo. Exit/ Exist produced & choreographed by Vuyani Dance Theatre also received a nomination.

This is another year of incredible theatre production showcased at the Market Theatre in 2019 #CelebratingExcellence. The Market Theatre Foundation congratulates all the nominated artists who worked tirelessly to produce work of the highest artistic standards and for assisting the Market Theatre Foundation to offer unforgettable theatre experiences for our audiences.

The Market Theatre Foundation’s roll of honour in the Naledi Theatre Awards nominations list is as follows:

BEST PRODUCTION OF A PLAY
The Fisherman – (Prod. The Market Theatre)

BEST NEW SOUTH AFRICAN SCRIPT
Currently (G)old – (Written/developed by the Kwasha Company)
Ekasi Lam’ – (Written by Jefferson Tshabalala)
Strange Land – (Written by Prof Anton Krueger)
VAN WYK: The Storyteller of Riverlea (Written by Zane Meas)
Venus vs Modernity – (Written by Lebo Mashile)

BEST CONTEMPORARY DANCE/BALLET PRODUCTION
Exit/Exist – (Prod. Vuyani Dance Theatre and The Market Theatre)

BEST PRODUCTION FOR INDEPENDANT/FRINGE THEATRE
No Easter Sunday for Queers – (Prod. The National Arts Festival & The Market – Theatre)

BEST PRODUCTION TERTIARY/INCUBATOR THEATRE
Eclipsed – (Prod. The Market Theatre)
Frontières – (Prod. The Market Theatre & The Dept Arts and – Culture Incubation)
Nailed – (Prod. The Market Theatre & The Dept Arts & Culture – Incubation)
Rhinoceros – (Prod. Kwasha! Theatre Company supported by The – Market Theatre Lab. Windybrow Arts Centre, – The French Institute of SA, Mazars by arr Samuel – French)

BEST LEAD PEFORMANCE IN A PLAY: FEMALE
Lebo Mashile as Saartjie – (Venus vs Modernity)

BEST LEAD PERFORMANCE IN A PLAY: MALE
Siyabonga Thwala as Obembe – (The Fisherman)
Warren Masemola as Ben – (The Fisherman)
BEST BREAKTHROUGH PERFORMANCE
Ann Masina as Venus – (Venus vs Modernity)

BEST ENSEMBLE
Currently (G)old – (Presented by the Kwasha Company in – assoc with the Market Theatre Laboratory and – Windybrow Arts Centre)

BEST SOLO PERFORMANCE IN A PRODUCTION MALE/FEMALE
Billy Langa as Narrator – (Tswalo)
Renos Nicos Spanoudes as Dimitri Tsafendas – (Strange Land)
Zane Meas as Chris van Wyk – (VAN WYK: The Storyteller of – Riverlea)

BEST DIRECTOR OF A PLAY
James Ngcobo – (The Fisherman)
Pamela Nomvete & Koleka Putuma – (Venus vs Modernity)

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY IN A PLAY OR A MUSICAL
Sinenhlanhla Mgeyi & Aalliyah Zama Matintela  – (Currently (G)old)

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE/ARRANGEMENT/ADAPTATION
Kholofelo Sewela & Major Mockery – (Venus vs Modernity)

BEST THEATRE SET DESIGN
Nthabiseng Malaka – (Strange Land)

BEST SOUND DESIGN/SOUNDSCAPE
Kholofela Sewela – (The Lion and the Lamb)
Yogin Sullapen – (Strange Land)

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For further information please contact:

Lusanda Zokufa Senior Publicist

0723677867 or lusandaz@markettheatre.co.za

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