Afkoeling, a radio play by Martyn Le Roux


Robyn Sassen

A freelance arts writer since 1998, I fell in love with the theatre as a toddler, proved rubbish as a ballerina: my starring role was as Mrs Pussy in Noddy as a seven-year-old, and earned my stripes as an academic in Fine Arts and Art History, in subsequent years. I write for a range of online and print publications, including the Sunday Times, the Mail & Guardian and and was formerly the arts editor of the SA Jewish Report, a weekly newspaper with which I was associated for 16 years.
Robyn Sassen


GRANNY gives it a spin. Photograph courtesy

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SOMETIMES WHEN IT seems that the whole world is conspiring wickedly against you, you’re actually an arm’s reach away from a new chapter. And before you reach for the cross stitch to immortalise that legend, dispossess yourself of any silly platitudes as you tune in to the podcast of Martyn Le Roux’s latest Afrikaans-language radio play Afkoeling, which was broadcast on June 13 on Radio Sonder Grense.

Remember the Vermaak family, who you might have met in Hittegolf, another play by Le Roux, broadcast last May? Well, it’s them again, dealing with their dire problems, and adding to them hilariously. Le Roux skilfully weaves darkness with humour in this very finely made work, in which you get a sniff of Nina Simone and a hint of Pink Floyd as the narrative shifts from bad to appalling. But the grin never leaves your face as the pregnancy of Amanda (Mandie Baard), the formerly golden girl of her high school becomes common…

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