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ALFRED HINKEL TRIBUTE TO MATHESON (article first published : 2005-05-29)

Well-known director of musicals in South Africa, David Matheson, died of a heart attack in Cape Town recently. (See separate article)

Alfred Hinkel, Artistic Director of Jazzart Dance Theatre and close friend and colleague, pays this tribute:

David once said to me that "art" is 80% hard work the rest was an accident that happens somewhere between you and God.

Having said that, only God and David know how many times he directed Fiddler on the Roof. We met on one of these Fiddler productions with Audrey Turner as choreographer. I was a young freelance dancer.

Both David and Audrey had a major impact on my work as a contemporary dance maker as opposed to a choreographer of "book" musicals.

My stint as a choreographer of musicals was directly related to David. All the musicals I choreographed, he directed: Hair, J.C Superstar, Evita (Cape Town and Durban), Mame, The Wiz (Durban), and Camelot.

He never allowed me to just put steps together. He insisted that the dance numbers had to serve the story. This stood me in a good stead as contemporary dance maker.

Yes, David. Art is 90% hard work, but now maybe you can improve my chances with the accident bit. - Alfred Hinkel




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