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NEW SOUTH AFRICAN PLAYS (article first published : 2006-07-15)

New South African Plays is edited by Charles J Fourie with a foreword by Gcina Mhlophe.

Researched over a two-year period, this collection is wide-ranging in its selection of writers from Black, Asian, white and mixed ethnicity. The subjects and themes of the plays reflect the changing nature of South African society, with the advances in education, the multi-cultural mix of new housing projects and the growth of the new black entrepreneur. It also explores the tensions that these rapid changes produce, alongside the problems of corruption, bribery, abuse and AIDS.

The plays have been developed via a number of routes, but mainly through The Baxter Theatre or the PANSA awards as well as for the radio. The introduction by award-winning playwright Charles J Fourie provides a useful overview of contemporary South African Theatre and Gcina Mhlophe offers her personal view of the new South Africa in the foreword.

This collection provides students with an essential resource for studying modern South African drama and offers insights into the complexities of a modern nation in transition. For teachers and drama practitioners, there are poetic, comic and serious dramas to explore.

Authors and plays included in the anthology are Beverley Naidoo’s The Playground - Time Out Critics Choice recently seen at Polka Theatre; Sibusiso Mamba’s Taxi satire on the new black entrepreneurs and broadcast on BBC Radio 4, and Rehane Abrahams’s What The Water Gave Me, poetic monologues performed at the Baxter Studio. Also featured are PANSA finalist Ashwin Singh’s To House, premiered at Catalina Theatre in Durban and James Whyle’s Rejoice Burning which was broadcast by BBC on World Aids Day.

Making up the list is Mike Van Graan’s Green Man Flashing, an award-winning play which recently played the Baxter Theatre and which has already been prescribed for the school curriculum in South Africa.

Editor Charles J Fourie is considered one of the leading playwrights of his generation. His multi-award-winning plays have been produced in South Africa and the UK. During 2002, he co- presented a A Season in South Africa at the Old Vic Theatre in London.

New South African Plays retails at £11.99 ISBN 0-9542330–1-8 and can be ordered through Aurora Metro Press at 2 Oriel Court, 106 The Green, Twickenham, TW2 5AG, UK, or phone 00 44 (0) 20 8898 4488 or email: info@aurorametro.com or visit www.aurorametro.com




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