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DEFENDING THE CAVEMAN (article first published : 2002-08-15)

At last, the emancipation of the male species made possible! Well, hardly at last, as I have attended the 1004th performance of Tim Plewmanís solo performance in Defending The Caveman. Produced by Pieter Toerien and originally written by Rob Becker, the play focuses on man and woman, husband and wife and beautifully illustrates that the two sexes are indeed from different planets!

A pre-programmed sequence of actions and vocal stunts on par with the best in the world and clearly adored by everyone in attendance. Despite the amplified voice, Plewman displays an accomplished aplomb in dealing with the text, the audience and certainly the magic of his well-groomed and flexible voice. His gesticulation, use of the stage and relaxed performance is so well established that it almost made it predictable and slightly glib. What else can one expect when an actor has performed the same show so many times? Think about it. Plewman has defended the caveman more times than 100 average men combined would have gone grocery shopping in their entire lives!

His boast of always having full houses has an endearing ring to it. Who would not blast it out in an audience-crippled country such as South Africa? After all, the man is powerful, extremely talented and gets people into theatres in their hordes.

The hilarious and clever text appeals to one and all and provides for a fun-filled evening of escapism. The statement as to whether men are indeed ďassholesĒ is questioned, explained, defended, answered and becomes a proud slogan for the male sex. The play does for men what the burnt brassiere could not do for women! And maybe finally does for women what the burning offering should have done.

No matter what you do, see this show. Menís journey from mars via Venus is best illustrated and enjoyed through Beckerís uproarious play: full of fun, truth and acceptance. Cancel the marriage counselling session, theatre tickets cost less!

Defending the Caveman runs at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre until August 17 but itís doubtful as to whether youíll get tickets. Rather hop on a plane and follow Tim Plewman to his next venue, if that isnít booked out as well! Book at Computicket or phone 011 340-8000 or 083 915-8000. Ė Thomie Holtzhausen




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