Korporaal Lemmer en die Rowers on RSG


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 artslink.co.za and was formerly the arts editor of the SA Jewish Report, a weekly newspaper with which I was associated for 16 years.
Robyn Sassen


I believe in angels: Swedish pop group Abba which gave South African army boys the courage to be, under apartheid.

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IF YOU WERE conscious in South Africa between the 1960s and 1990s, when the apartheid army held sway over South Africa’s male youth, the premises of Korporaal Lemmer en die Rowers, this week’s Afrikaans-language radio drama on Radio Sonder Grense will bring swarms of goosebumps, blending army humiliation with Abba songs, the horror of pettiness with the hopelessness of boys forced into this harsh terrain, which will possibly leave them in army terms, “Fubar” (Fucked up beyond any recognition).

Written by Bun Booyens and Hélène Booyens, the work focuses on the hapless rookie “Jaws” (André Terblanche), who suffers a chronic stutter as it details the minuscule rules and harsh punishments. And in this way, like Christiaan Olwagen’s film Kanarie, Korporaal Lemmer lends muscular, unrelenting insight into the traumatic complexities which make an army and one…

To read the complete post please visit https://robynsassenmyview.com/2019/11/28/secret-weapons/

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