Anti-crime fest

Martin Koboekae

Martin Koboekae

Artists who cut their teeth in the Stop Crime Drama Festival include Oscar winner Presley Chweneyagae.

The popular actor is best known for his appearances in Tsotsi, Cards and Hillside.

Chweneyagae, who appeared two times in the yearly festival, won the best actor award in the North West leg of the showcase in 2001.

l Another notable face and name is Terry Phetoe, whose festival participation was in Peter Ngwenya's The Toilet.

Phetoe is best known for her appearance in Athol Fugard's movie adaptation of the stage drama Tsotsi and the SABC1 drama series Zone 14.

l Kere Nyawo and Thulani Didi, who are popularly known as funny characters - Popeye and Spinach - in Zone 14, are regular drama workshop facilitators for the festival.

Nyawo and Didi have also won best actor and best director awards in the festival, as well as best production award for Hola Majita, and an award for best script Kuze Kuse Bash.

l Douglas Tsimane, an assistant director in the North West department of arts and culture, has won several awards for his play The Reward.

l Carol Behane, who portrays Lebo in Zone 14, is one of the regulars who assists with workshops and merchandising.

l Bongani Linda of Shaka Zulu fame has featured in five plays, and has won best production two times with his popular work Hola Magenge.

l Ntshieng Sithe has contributed as a director and workshop facilitator and her shows, Zishubile and Umdlwembe, were a hit nationally in the festival and won awards for best director and best production.

l Paul Grootboom, writer of the award-winning mainstream theatre production Cards, won the best writer award in the festival with Crime Story.

l Darlington Michaels, of the SABC3 soapie Isidingo, has featured in plays including Jackroll, Herebedesh and My Child Democracy. He is a regular developmental theatre workshop facilitator.

l Jabu "Chirwali" Nkosi and Jerry "Mofokeng" Phele of the popular show Emzini Wezinsizwa have been involved as guests artists, motivators and mentors.

l Seputla Sebogodi, who portrays the ruthless and scheming Mashaba in Generations on SABC1, is also a patron of the festival.

l Dieketseng Mnisi, who appears in Muvhango on SABC2, is a veteran of the festival and is among the workshop facilitators this year.

l Other artists who have either performed, directed or facilitated workshops in the festival over the past decade include Peter Mashigo, Xoli Norman, John Lata, Tina Mnumzana, veteran Selaelo Maredi, disco queen Mercy Pakela, Peter Ngwenya and Moagi Modise.

l The author is the pioneer producer of the Stop Crime Drama Festival.