Media Alert: Environmental Drama Festival at Artscape on 16 and 17 July | Western Cape Government


Media Alert: Environmental Drama Festival at Artscape on 16 and 17 July

14 July 2010

The City of Cape Town, in association with Artscape, will be hosting the third YES Environmental Drama Festival on 16 and 17 July at the Arena Theatre.

Note: All media are welcome to attend.

The YES Drama Festival is one of the youth development initiatives for the City of Cape Town's Youth Environmental School (YES) programme. The festival is only open to participating schools.

The theme of this environmental drama festival is Cape Town 2020: Climate Change. Environmental plays to be showcased at this two-day festival are created by high schools in Cape Town. Under this theme the learners explore what actions need to be taken now to ensure positive results in the next ten years. The local context of Cape Town is explored and participating learners are aware that local actions have a global impact on climate change.

There are eight schools participating in this year's YES Environmental Drama Festival:

  • Malibu High
  • Zisukhanyo Secondary
  • Aloe High
  • Durbanville Children's Home
  • The Settlers High
  • Isilimela Comprehensive
  • Windermere High
  • Immaculata R.C. High

In preparation for this festival, participating schools attended creative workshops on environmental theatre led by members of the well known theatre company, Theatre for Africa. Says Nicholas Ellenbogen of Theatre for Africa: "The learners really engaged in these workshops, exploring different ways of using the body and the voice to develop character and theatrical form; they have also received great support from environmental experts to assist in the accurate development of information for their scripts".

Learners were encouraged to write scripts which focused on an environmental issue relevant to the community in which they live and go to school, and relevant to the overall environmental concern of climate change. Nicholas Ellenbogen also developed a 'one-set-for-all' design which challenged the learners to use the same set properties in their plays. This is a very exciting development of the YES Environmental Drama Festival and has called on the learners to be highly creative in their approach to the set, no longer relying on extraneous props but using their bodies and voices, and minimal set.

The eight performances will take place Friday 16 July before an adjudicating panel of six judges.

This panel comprises of:

  • Andrew Bennett, an environmental consultant from icologie.
  • Ina Bruce, the Curriculum Advisor for the subject Dramatic Arts at the Western Cape Education Department.
  • Liz Ellenbogen, director and founder member of Theatre for Africa.
  • Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi, principal performer with Theatre for Africa.
  • Mdu Kwayama, award winning theatre and dance practitioner and performer.
  • Pavs Pillay, a science communicator who specialises in marine issues and global climate change based at the Marine Research Institute at University of Cape Town (UCT).

On Saturday 17 July the festival will host a showcase performance and prize giving. Prizes will be awarded for the Best Performer and Best Supporting Performer, Best Production and Most Promising Production, the Best Script and an overall Judges Award for an unique feature in a production which is worthy of special mention.


Environmental plays

Date: Friday 16 July

Time: 14:00-17:30

Venue: Arena Theatre, Artscape

Prize-giving, showcase performance and celebratory lunch:

Date: Saturday 17 July

Time: 11:30-14:00

Venue: Arena Theatre, Artscape

Issued by:
Communication Department
City of Cape Town

Media Enquiries: 

Lindie Buirski
Head of Environmental Capacity, Building,
Training & Education, Environmental,
Resource Management Department
City of Cape Town
Cell: 084 629 9305