Marikana the Musical triumphs with six Naledi Theatre Awards

2015-04-15 15:03

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With six gongs out of a possible 14, Aubrey Sekhabi’s Marikana the Musical was the biggest winner at the 11th annual Naledi Theatre Awards held at the Lyric Theatre in Gold Reef City, Johannesburg, last night.

The emotionally charged production won the awards for best director, best score/adaptation/arrangement, best female performance in musical, best theatre design, best choreography as well as best production in a musical awards.

When it was announced as the best production, its sixth and last award for the night, the whole ensemble descended on to the stage, amid chants of song and dance as the cast shouted: “Basebenzi, basebenzi masihlangane (workers, workers let us unite)”.

“I am happy with how the crew and cast came together to tell an honest and emotional story with such honesty. Our hard work paid off. It would have been the cherry on top had we also won the individual acting award for best male. But as they say, you win some and you lose some,” said Sekhabi just after the ceremony.

The other biggest winner was the Rocky Horror Show with four awards in the categories for best theatre lighting design, best theatre sound design, best musical director as well as the joint award in best male performance in a musical which was shared by Brendan van Rhyn and Jonathan Roxmouth of Call Me Lee.

Pale Natives took home three trophies for best production of a play, best male lead performance in a play, as well as best male performance in a supporting or cameo role.

Animal Farm followed closely with two gongs for best ensemble as well as the best production of a play or musical for young audiences awards.

Shaleen Surtie-Richards was honoured with a life-time achievement award. The evergreen versatile actor said the award should have been called “the halftime achievement award” as she was not done yet.

Naledi Awards’ executive director Dawn Lindberg said the industry needed support from both the government and the private sector in order to elevate the status of the industry and attract audiences, which was a major challenge facing the industry.

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