Vintage Grootboom

Edward Tsumele

Edward Tsumele

Paul Grootboom has an affinity for depicting violent behaviour and using the kind of language that our mothers never allowed us to use.

Those familiar with Relativity and Cards will attest to the young writer and director's love affair with these techniques.

Now he has come up with a new production, Telling Stories, which fits perfectly into his familiar theatrical frame.

After its three-week run at The State Theatre, Pretoria, TellingStories will head for an arts festival in Brussels.

Telling Stories is Grootboom's attempt to give us "an unsparing view of life in the townships of the post- apartheid era".

Madi is a young black writer working on a play about crime. To give his work realism, he approaches a gang of township thugs and what starts out as field research deteriorates into betrayal,

violence and murder.

Grootboom seasons his stage productions with references to the silver screen. Scenes follow one another in quick succession, taking their rhythm from film soundtracks and classical tunes.

The tone makes the harsh reality slightly more bearable, but at what point does the presentation of violence turn into voyeurism?

This is vintage Grootboom.

It opens today and closes on May 11. Shows start at 8pm.