Giving life to words

2008-07-09 00:00

MEETING Ronnie Govender in the foyer at the Playhouse in Durban, there is a sense of déjà vu. We have been here before. Back in the nineties, when Govender was director of the Playhouse complex, I interviewed him here, and bumped into him regularly at plays and other events.

One thing that is clear from the book is that Govender will never shy away from a fight, sometimes landing himself firmly in the manure in the process. He is always a friendly figure to meet, so I ask, is he really so combative? “I don’t believe you should run away from a challenge, or when you are confronted with tyranny, injustice or wrong. You must stand up and speak out,” he says. And while he says he believes you should play the ball and not the man, the book does tell of a couple of occasions when he has gone in, boots and all, when angered. “At the time, it gave me pleasure,” he admits. “But I wasn’t happy with myself afterwards.”

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