O-WEEK 2015 at Wits Theatre

Wits Theatre announces its line up fort O-Week 2015
Wits Theatre announces its line up fort O-Week 2015

O-Week @ Wits University….it’s that time of the year, when Wits University welcomes its new students to campus. It’s a jam-packed week, with new students deluged with all the information they’ll need to navigate the corridors of their new home easily. Wits prides itself on being an institution that offers students a well-rounded education that includes exciting cultural programmes, sporting activities, clubs and numerous other programmes that cater to the whole individual.

In keeping with that, Wits Theatre produces a theatrical offering in O-Week for everyone on campus (new and current students, staff and visitors) to enjoy.

Embrace the opportunity to experience the talents of students and some staff from both the music and drama departments.

All shows are just R10.00 each for the duration of O-Week. [GARD]

The O-Week 2015 programme reflects some of the themes that the first year students must deal with in their first year at University. The word ‘orientation’ can be defined in various ways. The Oxford English Dictionary says it’s “the faculty by which [you] find [your] way back to a place after going to a place different from it [or] your familiarisation with something.”

A view of the Wits Theatre from the stage. Tickets for all shows at the Wits Theatre O-Week programme cost R10 each.
A view of the Wits Theatre from the stage. Tickets for all shows at the Wits Theatre O-Week programme cost R10 each.

In PALESA IN JOZI-LAND, Palesa must find her way between two very different worlds, i.e. New Democracia and Jozi-land; the one an ideal democracy and the other a dissolute world where no distinction is made between right or wrong. Finding her ‘home’ or remaining displaced could mean the difference between a figurative ‘life or death’.

JO’OBO THEATRE centres, literally, around four homeless beggars who are invisible to  society and who (at best) enjoy an ‘informal citizenship’.

DEAD ROSES highlights just one of the relationships all humans strive to have – a romantic one. We encounter three different couples’ narratives in various significant stages of their relationships: a beginning, a middle and an end.

NOCTURNE is about the night. At night we explore our deepest and darkest desires; we discover miracles and nightmares. We are everyman, ‘displaced’ and inhabiting a virtual world – we are ‘dis-orientated.’ Will the nightmare take over our young hero or is there something more in store for our everyman?

BOEGOESPRUIT  EXT 25 – An extension to a location, nowhere, somewhere? Who lives in a place that is named after a form of moonshine and designated as somewhere off a highway? We have the mainstream world and then we have the ‘other’.

What defines the ‘other’? Is it skin pigmentation, class, education or money?

“Coloured people have always had a fascination with storytelling. The storyteller finds their meaning in the retelling of the story. Whilst you have your inheritance, we have our stories. Boegoespruit ext. 25, explores the lives of four Coloured people living in a city, mirroring contemporary Johannesburg… Kom binne.”

FISHING  ̶  The act of reaching out and catching fish.

How far do we reach out to each other? How often do we reach out to those we do not know? Everything has evolved and everyone is living in their own world. We neglect each other, forgetting what makes us human and what connects us.

Fishing explores the complex nature of human emotions, affecting each other and helping each other. What connects us and what makes us belong and feel excluded.

DVD SHACK is a play based on true events and is a sweet yet sassy love story between two video-store employees, incorporating written and physical comedy, as well as performance poetry. [GARD]

KULLID is an adaptation of three texts that examine Coloured identity in South Africa:

Suip by Oscar Petersen and Heinrich Reisenhofer,  A Coloured Place by Lueen Conning (Malika Ndlovu) and What the Water Gave Me by Rehane Abrahams.

Kullid tells the story of the social, historical and political positioning of multiple characters interwoven within the memory of Sophia, a Coloured ‘bergie’ living on the streets of post-apartheid Cape Town.

Through the journey of multiple characters, Kullid explores the legacy of the injustices of colonialism, the imprisonment of poverty and the crisis of a disparate identity.


Musicians: Maria Mombelli – Wurlitzer electric piano and composition; Wynand Davel  – Violin; Carlo Mombelli – Bass; Justin Badenhorst  – Drums

Maria Mombelli, a young South African composer has put together a group with the experienced musicians, Carlo Mombelli on bass, Justin Badenhorst on drums, and Wynand Davel on violin, called ‘Maria Mombelli and the Bellibuttons’. With Maria on Wurlitzer Electric piano, her music is a fusion of styles, influenced by Avishai Cohen and Radiohead. The band has a strong groove element with infectious drum rhythms supported by melodic bass lines and gypsy-folk inspired violin over Maria’s trance-like piano ostinato riffs.

Carlo Mombelli is a senior lecturer in the music department at Wits University and plays and records internationally with his Storytellers ensemble.

Justin Badenhorst is one of the foremost drummers in South Africa, playing in several projects, shows and sessions and is currently a member of Marcus Wyatt’s group. He has also taught drum techniques at Wits University.

Wynand Davel is an accomplished violinist and improviser and forms part of the core of the Kalahari Radio Orkes.

PRODUCTION: O-WEEK (Orientation week)
VENUE: Wits Theatre Complex, Wits East Campus, Braamfontein
SEASON:  Monday 9 – Friday 13 February 2015
BOOKING: Tickets are available at the door only; ticket price = R10.00 per person
ENQUIRIES: 011 717 1376 / catherine.pisanti@wits.ac.za

Visit www.wits.ac.za/witstheatre for the details.


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