The Centre for Creative Arts at the University of KwaZulu-Natal is pleased to announce the cohort of writers and composers selected to participate in its inaugural “Cabaret and Beyond Festival” aimed at developing new works of musical theatre.
“We received 80 applications,” says Roland Perold, curator for the festival. “I was pleasantly surprised that there was so much interest in the project, and it means we were able to assemble a strong list of candidates who will be composing for the showcase in October”.
The CAB Festival wants to fill the existing gap in writing new works in the musical theatre genre. Together with the Centre for Creative Arts, they could not identify any local mentorship or training programs in this field. Facilitated by Perold, who holds an MMus in Songwriting and has written four-chamber musicals, the cohort of writers are commissioned to compose individual songs that will be staged in Durban utilizing a small cast and creative team. Works that show the most promise for further development will receive grants to extend their material into works of a longer format.
“South Africa has a long tradition of musical theatre that is richly textured by our own artistic influences and social narratives. We are excited to add this new festival to our bouquet of successful festivals, and we are inspired by the diverse talent that will comprise our inaugural festival”, says Ismail Mahomed, the Director of the Centre for Creative Arts.
The following thirteen participants will be writing as solo candidates, hailing from all over South Africa:
- Language educator, literary researcher, composer, lyricist, singer, creative and academic writer Tsitsi Sachikonye;
- Electronic music producer Luca Hart;
- Musical theatre composer Roné Roux;
- Multi-award-winning performer Tankiso Mamabolo;
- Cum-laude drama graduate Mthokozisi Zulu;
- Musical director, composer and performer Rexleigh Bunyard;
- Writer, director, lyricist and performer Zeph Nzama;
- Actor and composer Trudy Rozani;
- Multi-award-winning performer, actor, director, writer, and composer Godfrey Johnson;
- Musical creator Dani Petersen;
- Award-winning actor, composer and designer Marcel Meyer;
- Guitarist, singer, rapper, and songwriter Chad Cochrane.
Additionally, there will be a writing duo consisting of musical theatre director and producer Wessel Odendaal and Marcel Meyer, as well as a writing trio made up of performer and creative Dionne ‘Song’ Malan, Zolani Shangase & Mthokozisi Khanyile, who is currently playing Mufasa in the Lion King Cast International Tour.
“The participants represent an exciting mix of experienced writers alongside some newcomers whose submissions exhibited great potential,” says Perold.
Details about the Cabaret And Beyond Festival will be regularly posted on the Centre for Creative Arts Facebook page.