South Africa: Fugard Theatre Latest Victim in Ongoing Decimation of SA's Cultural Life

The front door of the Fugard Theatre in Cape Town.
analysis

Cape Town's premier independent theatre, The Fugard, announced on Tuesday it will be closing permanently. It's the latest blow to a cultural sector being hollowed out by Covid-19, without much light on the horizon.

"Another icon has fallen to Covid-19," tweeted South African actor John Kani on Wednesday.

Kani was referring to the permanent closure of Cape Town's Fugard Theatre, as announced on Tuesday by its founder Eric Abraham in a statement on the theatre's website.

"We are not persuaded that it will be Covid safe or financially viable to reopen as a theatre in the foreseeable future," Abraham wrote.

"The theatre will be handed back to the owner of the freehold of the building - the board of The District 6 Museum - as a working theatre and we hope that they will be able to use it for the benefit of the museum and the District 6 community."

For a decade, the Fugard was at the heart of Cape Town's theatrical life, drawing sizable audiences through savvy rostering that saw the theatre give platforms to local playwrights as well...

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