Courtyard Playhouse Opening Season Jan – Apr 2020

By MapMyWay
3 January 2020

Courtyard Playhouse, Alexander Bar
Courtyard Playhouse Opening Season curated by Jemma Kahn

The Opening Season at Courtyard Playhouse – aka Alexnder Bar – is curated by Jemma Kahn.

Jemma Khan studied Fine Art and Drama in Johannesburg. After graduating she spent two years in Japan where she learned kamishibai – a traditional storytelling style that Jemma brought back to South Africa and made her own in the critically acclaimed trilogy The Epicene Butcher, We Didn’t Come to Hell for the Croissants and In bocca al lupo – all of which she performed hundreds of times (no exaggeration) at The Alexander Bar. In 2018 she was awarded the prestigious Standard Bank Young Artist Award for theatre.

The Courtyard Playhouse – the new owners are very busy with theatre renovations – so, expect to see a brand new, beautiful, intimate theatre space for Cape Town theatre-lovers and practitioners. 

  • How to End Racism by Chester Missing

Courtyard Playhouse, Conrad Koch, Alexander Bar

In his most confrontational work to date, Conrad Koch allows his puppet Chester Missing to turn on him, asking him some pretty uncomfortable questions about his own white privilege and his racism. Chester Missing and Conrad Koch were awarded the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation’s anti-racism award in when they won a civil campaign against singer Steve Hofmeyr. Anyone who has a go at Steve is a national treasure in our books. What a wonderful way to kick off the first season at the Courtyard Playhouse.

Conrad is South Africa’s top comedy ventriloquist, and possibly the only one, and is a double International Emmy nominated comedian. Awards: 2010 South African Entertainer of the Year

Chester Missing has interviewed most of South Africa’s political elite and has held a number of regular radio and TV slots, and even wrote an award-winning book. Conrad’s live shows have received wide political acclaim, and are a regular feature at arts and comedy festivals, including at the prestigious Just For Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal. The truth is, with a master’s degree in social anthropology, talking to puppets was his only career option.

Some feedback:
“Brings the roof down” The Independent, London
“Delicious…hilarious ventriloquised repartee” The Argus
“Hilarious.” Mail & Guardian
“I almost cried with laughter” The Herald

WHAT: Directed by Chris Weare; Written by Conrad Koch; Starring Conrad Koch and Chester Missing
WHEN: 11 Jan (Public Opening Event) 7pm – 10pm. 15 Jan – 18 Jan 8pm – 9:30pm  BOOKING: Visit

  • Woolworths

Courtyard Playhouse, Woolworths, Alexander Bar

Lee-Anne wants to go shopping, Jason wants to be American, and Emily just wants to get married! But why can’t Karen sleep at night? And what is that noise outside?

There’s something out there. There’s a shadow in the garden, a shape at the bottom of the swimming pool, a breathing at the top of the stairs, and a face, a face, a face in the mirror.

Award-winning playwright, Juliet Jenkin (The Boy Who Fell from the Roof) presents Woolworths, a dark, mesmerising, and hilarious satire on middle-class South Africa. Charging through trellidoors, security estates, rhino charities, gold mines, shopping malls, rugby stadiums, game farms and bank queues, this epic choral work is a force of culture.

‘A combination of totally unexpected, original and brilliant.’ – The Weekend Special

WHAT: Written and directed by Juliet Jenkin; Starring Clyde Berning, Alice De Beer, Alicia McCormick, Kaylee McIlroy, Francesco Nassimbeni, Tazmé Pillay & Johann Vermaak.
WHEN: 12 – 15 Feb at 7pm – 8pm; 19 – 22 Feb at 7pm & 9pm; 26 – 29 Feb at 9pm & 10pm  BOOKING: Visit

  • The Waterworks Anthology

Courtyard Playhouse, Waterworks, Alexander Bar

Two hapless traveling players unpack their suitcases full of budget store props to tell three short stories based on the adventures of three drops of liquid. A tear falls in love with its crier, a love triangle between a bull, a matador and his cape and finally the seed of love (that’s a euphamism for sperm) witnesses the doomed affair between Romeo and Juliet. Previously staged in Afrikaans as Klara Maas se Hart is Gebreek : die Flooistof Trilogie – we are delighted to bring the English premiere of this critically acclaimed and much loved gem from one of South Africa’s most gifted playwrights.

‘If you, like me, adore Mel Brooks movies, howl with laughter watching Jeff Dunham’s “Peanut”, have extensive musical and literary references to draw from and to top it off, have a soft spot for freaks and misfits, then The Waterworks Trilogy is right up your street.’ – Marina Griebenow

‘Remarkable .. full of imagination and wonderment .. exquisitely executed .. supremely intelligent.’ – Fritz

‘A ridiculously hilarious show about bodily fluids? In a world as crazy as the one we are currently in, this feels positively normal. A love-struck teardrop, an eternal droplet of blood and a spermatozoon with a hankering to fly. If this doesn’t tickle your soul, nothing will.’ – Tracey

WHAT: Written and directed by Wessel Pretorius; Starring Wessel Pretorius & David Viviers
WHEN: 22 – 25 Jan at 8pm; 29 – 1 Feb at 8pm; 5 – 8 Feb at 8pm  BOOKING: Visit

  • Amateur Hour!

Courtyard Playhouse, Amateur Hour,Alexander Bar

“Only artists with an encyclopedic knowledge of performance, theatre and comedy could deliberately stage a show so gloriously shambolic.”

– ★★★★½ The West Australian, Fringe World, Perth

Though it never saw the critical success of anything else anyone involved with the play has ever done, Amateur Hour! must be someone’s favourite show, it must be…  Amateur Hour! – a loving celebration of rank amateurism – is coming out of retirement. The production premiered at the National Arts Festival in 2013 where it won nothing and played to befuddled houses from Cape Town to Perth (twice).

WHAT: Directed by John Trengove; Written by Gwydion Beynon; Starring Glen Biderman-Pam and Jemma Kahn
WHEN: 4 -7 Mar at 8pm – 9:30pm; 11 – 14 Mar at 8pm – 9:30pm; 18 – 21 Mar at 8p – 9:30pm; 25 – 28 Mar at 8pm – 9:30pm  BOOKING: Visit

WHERE: Courtyard Playhouse (Alexander Bar, Café) 76 Strand Street corner Loop Street, Cape Town 8001
INFO: Visit