The darling of South African stage, television and film, Sandra Prinsloo, returns in her latest hit production Kamphoer – die verhaal van Susan Nell, directed by the internationally acclaimed Lara Foot.
The Afrikaans drama is based on the best-selling and debut novel Kamphoer by Francois Smit and the non-fiction publication The Boer Whore by Nico Moolman, and has been adapted for the stage by Cecilia du Toit, in collaboration with Sandra Prinsloo and Lara Foot.
This powerful solo-production is significant at a time when gender-based violence has reached critical levels across the country.
Prinsloo appears in the challenging role of Susan Nell, who faced an unspeakable ordeal during the Anglo-Boer War (1899 – 1902). Susan and her mother end up in the Winburg concentration camp where she is brutally raped and left for dead. She survives, escapes the camp and is hidden in a cave by a Sotho couple, who nurse her back to health. She later qualifies as a psychiatric nurse in the Netherlands and travels to England during the First World War to serve at a military hospital. She crosses paths with one of her rapists, now a patient, and Susan is once again confronted with the pain and humiliation of her past.
With Sandra Prinsloo
Directed by Lara Foot
Based on the best-selling and debut novel Kamphoer by Francois Smit and the non-fiction publication The Boer Whore by Nico Moolman
Set and lighting design: Patrick Curtis
Sound design, soundscape and composition: Simon Kohler
Costume design: Mariechen Vosloo and Birrie le Roux
Adapted for stage by Cecilia du Toit in collaboration with Sandra Prinsloo and Lara Foot
Stage manager: Jeanne Steenkamp
Produced by Theatrerocket
Made possible by KunsStig
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Sandra Prinsloo | One of South Africa’s best-known actresses and personalities.
In July 2019 the production Kamphoer – die verhaal van Susan Nell, directed by Lara Foot, opened to great acclaim in Bloemfontein. This production, for which Prinsloo received the 2020 kykNET Fiësta award: best performance in a solo production, is touring the country.
Sandra has just finished filming the second season of Openbarings which she presents for VIA TV.
After matriculating at Afrikaans Meisies Hoërskool in 1964, Sandra completed her BA Drama in 1967, as well as her Honors degree in 1968, both at the University of Pretoria. She joined PACT’s Afrikaans acting company during this same year, and remained there until the Market Theatre opened in Johannesburg seven years later. After performing in this theatre’s two opening productions, she started her freelance career.
After seeing Sandra perform in Koffer in die kas at the Civic Theatre, Barry Ronge from the Sunday Times wrote: In Japan, when the power and value of artists to the cultural life of the country are deemed to be at their height, they are declared ‘national treasures’ – an honour for which Sandra Prinsloo is long overdue.
Her stage and film career spans a period of 45 years. During this time she has performed leading female roles in the plays of renowned international dramatists and of local South African playwrights, totalling over 100 different productions to date.
She has also established a reputation as an outstanding actress in many countries overseas, including England, France, Germany and the United States. De Kat magazine named Sandra as one of the 100 most influential people in South Africa.
Besides Sandra Prinsloo’s popularity as an actress and artist, she is certainly one of the most controversial personalities in the local world of entertainment. Her involvement with and concern for the racial situation in South Africa is well known beyond the borders of this country. Her appearance in the title role of Miss Julie opposite black actor, John Kani in 1985 met with bomb threats and violent assaults. She was the first South African white actress to appear on stage in love scenes with a black actor. As a result of this, she was ostracised by many of her countrymen.
Her leading roles in theatre include:
The Merchant of Venice, Othello, The Taming of the Shrew, Twelfth Night, Macbeth, Hamlet, A Winter’s Tale, Hedda Gabler, Siener in die Suburbs, Christine, Uncle Vanya, Three Sisters, The Cherry Orchard, Absurd Person Singular, Night and Day, Anastasia, The Seagull, Miss Julie, People are Living There and Amy’s View.
Sandra was honoured by kykNET Fiëstas 2019 for her Lifetime contribution to theatre. In 2018, Sandra received her fifth lifetime achievement award, when the University of Stellenbosch awarded her an Honorary Doctorate degree.
Other recent awards include:
Western Cape Minister of Cultural Affairs Special Award 2015: Outstanding Achievement of Women in the Arts and Culture.
The Presidency’s Order of Ikhamanga: for excellent contribution in the field of performing arts and for using creative arts to take a stand against racism, 2014
In 2013, the production Oskar en die pienk tannie received eight awards, including three Fiëstas for Best Actress, Best Director and Best Production.
Lara Foot is a multi-award-winning playwright, director and producer. She is the CEO and artistic director of the Baxter Theatre Centre at the University of Cape Town; a former Rolex protégé to Sir Peter Hall in the prestigious Rolex Mentor and Protégé programme as well as a Sundance Fellow.
She is also executive producer of (amongst others), the hit productions Mies Julie and The Fall, which have both won international awards and received great acclaim.
Lara completed her BA (Hons) degree at Wits University in 1989 and in 2007 attained her Master’s degree at the University of Cape Town. In 2005 she became the Resident Director and Dramaturge at the Baxter Theatre Centre – a post which she held until 2007. In January 2010 she became the first female to be appointed as CEO and Artistic Director of the Baxter.
With a passion for the development of new indigenous work, young writers and directors, she has put most of her energy into helping playwrights and theatre-makers realise their work, having nurtured several dozen new South African plays to their first staging. She has directed over 50 professional productions, 38 of which have been new South African plays.
Since heading up the Baxter Theatre Centre she has, together with a dynamic team, transformed the theatre’s development programme – the Zabalaza Theatre Festival – to become recognised and respected as one of the most vital and important platforms of its kind in South Africa. As a former Rolex protégé, she hosted a unique cultural gathering at the Baxter with renowned Mentors William Kentridge, Wole Soyinka and Peter Sellars, alongside seven protégés.
Lara worked at The Market Theatre under the mentorship of Barney Simon and in 1996 became Resident Director and from 1998 to 2000 she was the Associate Artistic Director. She wrote and co-directed (with Gerhard Marx) the interdisciplinary short film And There in the Dust, which won five international awards and two Golden Horn awards and was selected to be part of the Sundance Film Writer’s Lab in 2007 and the Sundance Film Director’s Lab in 2008.
In 2016 she was the Featured Artist at the 43rd National Arts Festival, leading the charge on the Main programme which is made up of 80% of work written, directed, curated or headlined by women. This, two decades after she was selected as the Standard Bank Young Artist for Drama.
With a host of South African theatre accolades to her name, her own hard-hitting plays tackle social issues in South Africa and these have earned her great respect and recognition locally and internationally.
Tshepang, Hear And Now, Reach, Karoo Moose, Solomon and Marion (all published by Oberon Books), Fishers of Hope and The Inconvenience of Wings are just a few of her plays which have won multiple awards and that have toured internationally with great success.
Fishers of Hope scooped four awards at the Naledi Theatre Awards in Johannesburg, including the coveted Best Production of a Play accolade. Earlier this year her latest play, The Inconvenience of Wings, earned her the Best Director honour, along with the Best Actress (Jennifer Steyn) and Best Actor (Andrew Buckland) nods at the 2017 Fleur du Cap awards. She also clinched three awards (Best Director, Best Production of a Play and Best Actress (Chuma Sopotela), for her play Karoo Moose at the 2017 Klein Karoo National Arts Festival (the largest Afrikaans Festival in South Africa.
In August 2017 she achieved the rare distinction of taking six Baxter Theatre Centre productions to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe as executive producer of the season in a programme which included three of her own productions.
Lara also directed the hugely successful season of Marc Lottering’s sold-out hit Aunty Merle The Musical and the sequel Aunty Merle, it’s a Girl.