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NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

AN OPEN LETTER TO THE EDITOR OF THE SUNDAY TRIBUNE (article first published : 2007-12-10)

Please spare us the disenchanted sighings and puerile whining of your two junior hacks, Colin Roopnarain and Claire Angelique (a pseudonym that puts one in mind of the non de plume of a less than tasteful mid Victorian “bodice ripper” authoress).

I realise that reviewers are allowed their opinions. The salient point here is that these are not reviewers. They are both so wet behind the ears one marvels that they have not drowned – but enough wishful thinking.

It is extremely tiresome to read their stupid views which are based entirely on jealously (Angelique) and ignorance (Roopnarain).

Surely as editor you should be responsible enough to read the drivel that was written regarding Robin Hood and Guys & Dolls and realise that as two such very, very young people should NOT be allowed to comment on any public platform.

Roopnarain would have been underage and, therefore, unable to see the first adult pantomime in Durban 11 years ago. He knows nothing of the traditions of these pantomimes whatsoever, and should have gleaned from the audience’s response that he should grow up and learn to know a little less.

As for Angelique (formerly Bezhuidenhout!!) her banal pseudo-politically correct musings about “Africanising” such a well-known and very American piece of period musical comedy are just insane. If she feels the need to Africanise anything she might start with her surname. Claire Mkhwane has a charming ring to it and would certainly suit a girl who once shuffled sadly upon a stage and sank without trace (the jealously I referred to earlier).

You have an experienced, wise and fair reviewer in Tommy Ballantyne. Why, oh why, did you not use him? The majority of your readers are not peers of Roopnarain and Angelique and I am sure care little for the drivellings of these two talentless scribblers.

Durban theatre productions should not be inaccurately maligned in your publication in this careless way. Furthermore, why not do away with the bloody awful graphic that leers at us weekly – and weakly – from the cover of SM and publish a photograph of a current show? A far more positive and creative way of assisting Durban theatre that somehow survives despite idiotic “critics”.

Anthony Stonier




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