The Zabalaza Theatre Festival promises top quality entertainment
It is hard to believe that it is a year since the lockdown and the national state of disaster were first announced in South Africa. Luckily, it is always an exciting time for us when The Baxter’s Zabalaza Theatre Festival pulsates throughout the building for a week. This year the festival celebrates its 11th year, from 19 to 27 March 2021, during COVID-19 Level 1 restrictions, with all protocols in place. Last year we just managed to finish the festival before the hard lockdown, so the team had to think out of the box to ensure a dynamic and safe festival for this year. I’d like to remind patrons and audicences that the wearing of masks throughout, is mandatory.
A warm welcome to all the 200 artists and participants of the 21 productions on the programme, and we look forward to seeing some fresh new voices emerge. We wish them well.
I want to invite you to join me, the University of Cape Town's vice-chancellor Mamokghethi Phakeng and the Baxter board in the Zabalaza Challenge, which gives the public the opportunity to make a significant impact on the festival and the artists involved. The Challenge, which we started in 2018, encourages individuals, businesses and organisations to join us in purchasing bulk tickets, at the price of only R30 each, for those who might not be able to afford them or would not otherwise be able to attend. The Challenge is an investment into the future of the arts as it contributes to the door takings of each show which go straight back to the groups and artists performing in the festival and, which in turn, encourages more pioneering works from the communities. Contributing to this vital initiative is easy and can be done via Webticketshere.
This year’s festival is dedicated to the memory of my friend, sister, colleague, Zoleka Helesi, co-founder and coordinator of the Zabalaza Theatre Festival since its inception, who sadly passed away on 11 December 2020.
I would like to thank each of you who have contributed to #BaxterCoffeeAngels, our innovative financial sustainability campaign. Your contributions made a significant difference in off-setting our loss of income last year. While the #BaxterCoffeeAngels drive's support has been deeply encouraging, 2021 has turned out to be more challenging. Current restrictions are financially prohibitive and make little economic sense for any theatre, as it continues to be restrictive to operate optimally. To this end, we strengthen our call for you to continue our drive to “buy The Baxter a cup of coffee every month” and encourage those who have not yet been able to do so - and to share widely - to become #BaxterCoffeeAngels.
For the full 2021 Zabalaza Theatre Festival programme, and to book:click here
Take care, and stay safe. Lara Foot
CEO: Baxter Theatre Centre
Faculty of Humanities
University of Cape Town
Private Bag X3