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Sunday, February 26, 2012

Reps Reporter – February 2012

A wet and rainy greeting to you all this February, a month in which we have seen some amazing thunderstorms at the theatre (all around Harare, too).
Shout! on stage with only a week to go

The musical revue Shout! is on main stage until Saturday March 3 and is receiving good feedback from people who have seen it so far. If you have not yet been, book now, as next week’s run of the final five shows are likely to be quite busy. Bookings for the Friday night performance, in particular, are going well. The show features songs from the 60s, 70s and 80s and has a great cast of favourites and newcomers, singers and dancers alike. It’s a couple of hours in which to relax, sing along and even dance if the mood takes you. Advance booking at The Spotlight, with ticket prices ranging from $8 to $15 and the usual discounts available.

Get dressed for a glitzy awards night

It’s the Reps Afdis Awards ceremony and show on Saturday March 10 (7pm) and everyone’s invited! Come along to see who wins an award and to have a social evening out with friends and colleagues. Thanks to African Distillers for their continued sponsorship that makes this essential event happen! Doors open 6pm, with complimentary wine available in the foyer until 7pm, when the curtain goes up on what promises to be an exciting and entertaining show. There’s no entry fee for this event.

Chapter Two up next

Zane E Lucas is directing Neil Simon’s Chapter Two as the next main stage production, with cast members Erin Cooper, Chloe Cattin, Joakim Daun and Shane Stockil well into rehearsals. It is the story of two people, George and Jenni, who discover each other at the threshold of a new chapter in their respective lives. A case of mistaken identities brings the recently-widowed George and the recently-divorced Jennie together in a whirlwind romance. A hasty wedding and disastrous honeymoon open up several doors to the past, which both of them are too scared to enter. The success of the play lies in its ability to breathe in the same air we all do, and it’s one of those rare plays in which one cannot help but smile and say: “yes, it’s happened to me.” Neil Simon is know all over the world for his rib-tickling comedies and this play proves his versatility beyond doubt. Advance booking is already open and people wishing to have a gala night with this magnificent production can contact the Reps office to find out how to go about it. Show runs March 22 to April 7.

And then …

… it’s time for the Repteens production, The Hysterical History of the Trojan War in early April, followed by our annual visit from HIFA in both theatres. After HIFA we have a selection of shows, including a very exciting new production helmed by Mario Ciampi called The A-Z Of Rock, as well as a run in Theatre Upstairs of Zane E Lucas’ entry into HIFA, Danai Gurira’s widely acclaimed Eclipsed.

Sunday Night Live … every month

Kevin Hanssen has introduced a regular feature in Theatre Upstairs: an open mic show called Sunday Night Live, in which performers of all kinds can come along (by pre-arrangement with Kevin) to act, sing, dance, juggle … in fact, to do anything entertaining and legal! Next one is Sunday March 26 (6pm) with all tickets $5. Supper and drinks in the bar afterwards.

Well done to two national award winners

Congratulations to Mike Southall on being named Zimbabwe’s Most Outstanding Actor in the recent NAMA Awards, the country’s national arts awards event. He was so named for his performance in last year’s Joseph My Boy and this was a well-deserved win.. Also, congrats to Michelle Nativel – on stage at present in Shout! and a regular on the Reps stage. She was named Zimbabwe’s Most Outstanding Female Dancer and won the people’s Choice Award for top dancer. Reps is proud of you both!

Beit Trust and Theatre Upstairs

Plans are moving fast for the expenditure of the grant received from the Beit Trust for the renovation of Theatre Upstairs. Action is being taken with regard to air conditioning, seating and a dressing room, as well as a general clean-up of this venue. Thanks to the Beit Trust for this very welcome support, which will help us make the theatre more welcoming and user-friendly.

Zane’s got his feet under the table

Zane E Lucas is our new Director of Productions and he is moving quickly to set up his own series of productions, as well as to help other directors ensure their productions are properly planned and run … and meet the increasingly improving standards we know will be forthcoming from his presence as part of the Reps team. His presence is being felt in a number of areas and everyone on stage and backstage is excited by what the future holds for The Repertory Players.

Come to the AGM

AGMs can be dull and uninteresting, but they are important features of organisational management … so all members are encouraged to be at the 2012 AGM, which will take place at 11am on Sunday March 25. Be part of the decision-making process by attending, listening, having you voice heard and voting in the executive committee for 2012/2013. At this AGM, you will be able to see how Reps has coped with a challenging year and emerged both stronger and with greater focus and determination. After the meeting, there will be a social in the bar, with Tony Palmer and Mike Freeman on hand to entertain throughout the afternoon.

Social events continue to provide variety and fun

Our social events calendar is full, with a string of events behind and before us, steered very ably by Jenni Ferguson in particular and by Tim Garrard and his bar management and social event committee in general. The content is varied and good and we have attracted a great many new members through this series of activities. If you would like to know more, get onto Jenni’s mailing list (write to or watch for the regular updates through the Reps mailing list. Reps is very lucky to have as many social events as we do and everyone’s encouraged to attend and enjoy them.

Did you know …

… that the team is working on a series of added-value services that can be sourced through Reps membership? Already, members can – by producing their membership cards – obtain a discount on meals at Adrienne’s Restaurant. All you do is show your card on arrival an then enjoy a meal from the restaurant’s a la carte menu. Adrienne’s is open daily from 10am to 10pm for coffees, lunch, dinner and special events such as birthdays. Adrienne’s will also soon relaunch the Daily Special voucher, which will be available through The Spotlight.

In addition, Bon Marche, Belgravia are offering Reps members, on production of your membership card, a hamburger and a coke for only $2.00. This applies on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only.

Repteens has a new committee

Meredith Render was elected Chairman of Repteens at their recent AGM, so here’s hoping for a good year ahead under her steady leadership. Repteens meet every Friday at 6pm during school terms and provide theatrical learning for the 13-19 age group … and a great deal of fun and fellowship. Kyla Render continues to be adult co-ordinator and the Repteens grow both in number and strength as a result of her efforts.

Preps under new management

David Bvumbe and Faith Ganyau are running Preps, the juniors’ theatrical learning group, which meets every Saturday during school terms at 9am. Parents, bring along the youngsters for some rewarding training and experience and help make these young people the stars of tomorrow.

Dress-Up Heaven has extended hours

Don’t forget that Dress-Up Heaven, aka The Reps Wardrobe, is open from Monday to Friday from 8.30am to 6pm, these extended hours being because of Collina Mvududu’s dedication to the task and her desire to cater for folk who can’t get there until after work. Costume hire is a key Reps service offering and many folk come along to hire costumes for special events, school plays … and many more purposes!

Until next month … keep well


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