Look­ing for things to do in Cape Town? Alexan­der Upstairs is an inti­mate per­for­mance space com­pletely sep­a­rate from the bar area with a festival-style pro­gram­ming model fea­tur­ing drama, com­edy, cabaret, jazz, acoustic ses­sions, read­ings and more. We often sched­ule more than one per­for­mance per night so please check times care­fully when booking.

Ashes to Ashes

Drama • Run­ning Time: 50 mins
By Harold Pin­ter | Directed by Gabriella Pinto. | Star­ring Terry Nor­ton as Rebecca & Mark Elderkin as Devlin
Face­book Event
After a suc­cess­ful run at the Cape Town Fringe Fes­ti­val, Harold Pinter’s ‘Ashes to Ashes’ comes to Alexan­der Bar.

On a sum­mer evening, Rebecca recalls a sado­masochis­tic rit­ual between her and a past over. An intrigued Devlin pro­ceeds to inter­ro­gate her in an attempt to rekin­dle their rela­tion­ship. She must revoke her repressed past to face her trou­bled present while his sus­pi­cions grow and his desire to secure and con­trol their future is threat­ened by her enig­matic rec­ol­lec­tions.

How do we live in the present if we repress past atrocities?
“Elderkin – who makes a wel­come return to seri­ous roles after a recent run of comedic per­for­mances – is cold, wry and qui­etly dom­i­neer­ing. Norton’s relaxed deliv­ery is at mas­ter­ful odds with the under­ly­ing inten­sity of her expe­ri­ence” — Carla Lever, The Daily Maverick

Book now by click­ing the but­ton of the per­for­mance you wish to attend:
Tue 27th Jan 7pm R100 (R90 online) Wed 28th Jan 7pm R100 (R90 online) Thu 29th Jan 7pm R100 (R90 online) Fri 30th Jan 7pm R100 (R90 online) Sat 31st Jan 7pm R100 (R90 online) Tue 3rd Feb 7pm R100 (R90 online) Wed 4th Feb 7pm R100 (R90 online) Thu 5th Feb 7pm R100 (R90 online) Fri 6th Feb 7pm R100 (R90 online) Sat 7th Feb 7pm R100 (R90 online)

Keep off the Grass

One Per­son Show • Run­ning Time: 50 mins
Directed by Gabriella Pinto | Per­formed by Kelly-Eve Koop­man | Writ­ten by Gabriella Pinto & Kelly-Eve Koop­man | Pro­duced by Fuzlin Esau
Face­book Event
In a secure sub­urb in the South, in the early morn­ing hours a woman suf­fo­cat­ing from sta­tus anx­i­ety sits enclosed by elec­tric fences, sur­rounded by roll on lawn, tucked behind a Trel­li­door and pro­tected by pri­vate secu­rity. In a street lulled by laven­der and deaf to her warn­ings of pot plant syn­di­cates, bin day con­spir­a­cies and stranger dan­ger, she reveals how far a vig­i­lant fyn­bos fundi must go, to serve and pro­tect a non­cha­lant neighbourhood.
Kelly-Eve Koop­man grad­u­ated from Stel­len­bosch Uni­ver­sity with a B-Dram in The­atre and Per­for­mance spe­cial­iz­ing in Cabaret. She has attempted to make the­atre ever since and is inter­ested in multi-genre work as well as social devel­op­ment. Over the course over the last few years she has been in pro­duc­tions that have toured the Afrikaans fes­ti­val cir­cuit and been nom­i­nated for some awards includ­ing Kan­nas and Fies­tas.

Gabriella has been cre­at­ing the­atre since she grad­u­ated from UCT with a BA in The­atre and Per­for­mance. She enjoys cre­at­ing new work as well as stag­ing exist­ing texts and was nom­i­nated for a Fleur du Cap for Best New Direc­tor in 2014.

Book now by click­ing the but­ton of the per­for­mance you wish to attend:
Tue 27th Jan 9pm R90 (R80 online) Wed 28th Jan 9pm R90 (R80 online) Thu 29th Jan 9pm R90 (R80 online) Fri 30th Jan 9pm R90 (R80 online) Sat 31st Jan 9pm R90 (R80 online) Tue 3rd Feb 9pm R90 (R80 online) Wed 4th Feb 9pm R90 (R80 online) Wed 4th Feb 9pm R90 (R80 online) Thu 5th Feb 9pm R90 (R80 online) Fri 6th Feb 9pm R90 (R80 online) Sat 7th Feb 9pm R90 (R80 online)

Play Things

Open-mic per­for­mance, writ­ing, film & music • Run­ning Time: 70 mins
Warn­ing: Run­ning time may vary
Wel­come to a new year. Do you remem­ber when ‘Beyond 2000′ was a cutting-edge-technology-of-tomorrow show look­ing to a future now fif­teen years in the past? No? That’s because you’re young and you should feel bad about that. I’ll tell what is still cut­ting edge though… Play Things. A night of fun, of try­ing out new writ­ing, short films, mak­ing music, mak­ing con­nec­tions and drink­ing spon­sored wine if you’ve taken the plunge and are pre­sent­ing some­thing. If you’re there just to watch it’s bunch of sur­prises, like unwrap­ping presents except with­out the pos­si­bil­ity of socks and under­wear (actu­ally I can’t rule that out). It’s also silly cheap. R20 if you pay online — and it’s best to book because it usu­ally sells out.

The first line-up of 2015 fea­tures: Robert Peter Hax­ton , Amy Lil­ley, Marie-Claire de Vil­liers, Pnina Fen­ster, Koleka Putuma, Cal­lum Tilbury and Oscar Leon Sanders.

Book now by click­ing this button:
Mon 2nd Feb 8pm R30 (R20 online)

An Extra­or­di­nar­ily Ordi­nary Life

A Musi­cal Mem­oir / Com­edy • Run­ning Time: 70 mins
Pre­sented by KBT Pro­duc­tions | Writ­ten & com­posed by Jervis Pen­ning­ton | Vocals: Janine Cupido | Gui­tar & spo­ken word: Jervis Pennington
Intro­duc­ing singer Janine Cupido singing ten new songs from com­poser Jervis Pen­ning­ton (The Soft Shoes, Scrib­ble, A Town called Fokol-Lutho) woven into and drawn from his often hilar­i­ous, some­what sham­bolic, tragi­comic youth and truth. Under­sized and under­fed at school, the most sea-sick Mid­ship­man in SA Naval his­tory and reluc­tant 80’s pop teen-idol, the author takes us on a ride from famous to home­less in a heart-stopping beat.

Both per­form­ers are born and bred Capeto­ni­ans so they took that as their band’s name. The Capetoians. Don’t ask what city you live in, ask what city you live for.…
Jervis Pen­ning­ton began his song writ­ing career as lead-singer of his 80’s pop group The Soft Shoes. The group won the 1983 TV Tal­ent Show Fol­low that Star with their song Elvis Astaire, writ­ten by Jervis, which went to No 1 on sev­eral radio sta­tions. The group sold over 100,000 records. Later, as Gen­eral Man­ager of EMI’s South African music label, CCP Records, he man­aged the careers of artists such as Brenda Fassie. His songs writ­ten for The Capeto­ni­ans mark a return to pop after writ­ing the songs and scripts for sev­eral suc­cess­ful musi­cal the­atre pro­duc­tions.

Praise for Jervis’s pre­vi­ous works:
Who Really Freed Nel­son?!
“…incred­i­bly mov­ing, world-class show…”  C.K. The Cit­i­zen
“See this show? Hell Yes!”  A.S. The Star
“…leaves audi­ence beg­ging for more.”  This Day

Book now by click­ing the but­ton of the per­for­mance you wish to attend:
Mon 9th Feb 8pm R90 (R80 online) Mon 16th Feb 8pm R90 (R80 online)

Porno 88

Table Read­ing | Com­edy • Run­ning Time: 90 mins
Writ­ten by Louis Viljoen | Directed by Greg Karvel­las
Warn­ing: mature lan­guage and sex­ual imagery | no under 18s
porn |pôrn| (also porno |ˈpôrnō|) infor­mal
1 pornog­ra­phy.
2 films, tele­vi­sion pro­grams, books, etc., regarded as cater­ing to a voyeuris­tic or obses­sive inter­est in a spec­i­fied sub­ject : a thrilling throw­back to the golden age of vam­pire movies—gothic porn of the high­est order.

Three friends, three actors, two pro­duc­ers, one nar­ra­tor, one ware­house, twenty four bats, five and a half mar­i­tal aides, 60 tubes of lube, one bucket of cheaper lube, bought ear­lier… um… nine other things to make up the list, and then more items until we got to eighty-eight or even 88… which is the coolest num­ber in the world, accord­ing to sci­en­tists and science.

The cre­ators of CHAMP bring you a read­ing of a play so sala­cious, so risque, so likely to offend the squares and tit­il­late the free and horny, that no the­atre was will­ing to pro­duce it. There was also a space issue and there are nine speak­ing roles and it’s quite a com­pli­cated set, so it’s a logis­ti­cal night­mare, but that’s nei­ther here nor there.

Join Greg Karvel­las and Louis Viljoen and their brave troupe of hungry-for-acclaim actors as they tackle the great un-produced script of this month or any other month (but prob­a­bly only this month).

Book now by click­ing the but­ton of the per­for­mance you wish to attend:
Wed 11th Feb 8pm R50 Thu 12th Feb 8pm R50

Mother City Sketch

Sketch Com­edy • Run­ning Time: 60 mins
Writ­ten & Directed by Robin Hitch­cock | Addi­tional Mate­r­ial by Mark Sykes | Per­formed by The Long Shots & Friends
Warn­ing: Not rec­om­mended for under 18s
“Mother City Sketch” presents orig­i­nal com­edy skits per­formed live by mem­bers of The Long Shots the­atre troupe and oth­ers from the Cape Town com­edy scene. This col­lec­tion of short sketches pokes fun at over-the-top Valentine’s Day presents, wine pair­ing courses, ugly new­borns and more. You’ll laugh until your cheeks hurt, but it will be worth it.
Writer/Director Robin Hitch­cock began pro­duc­ing sketch com­edy in 2011 with the all-female troupe Frankly Scar­lett, based in Pitts­burgh USA. Since mov­ing to Cape Town, Robin has been affil­i­ated with The Long Shots impro­vi­sa­tional com­edy troupe and Improv Cape Town. Mother City Sketch marks the South African debut of her writ­ten com­edy mate­r­ial. The Long Shots, who com­prise the core cast of the show, have been per­form­ing impro­vised com­edy in Cape Town since 2011, and are thrilled to branch out into pre-scripted mate­r­ial with Mother City Sketch.

Book now by click­ing this button:
Fri 13th Feb 7pm R90 (R80 online)

Ottoman Slap: an itin­er­ant tale through music & dance

Mid­dle East­ern music & dance • Run­ning Time: 60 mins
Musi­cal direc­tor: James van Min­nen | Raoul Spiegel: sax­o­phone, hulusi, saw | James van Min­nen: per­cus­sion, man­dolin | Simone Chiara: vocals, gui­tar, per­cus­sion | Marissa Cue­noud: per­cus­sion, dance | Callan Wolff: dou­ble bass
Ottoman Slap brings you melodies from the moun­tains of Al-Andalus, rhythms from the Mid­dle East and dance from the sands of the Sahara… right to the foothills of Table Moun­tain. Come enjoy this feast of flavours rang­ing from sul­try to sub­lime as this unlikely troupe takes you on a trip down the road less travelled!

This Cape Town ensem­ble has been slowly brew­ing over the last few years, cre­at­ing a reper­toire of ancient tra­di­tional music mixed with orig­i­nal pieces inspired by these lesser-known gen­res, with appear­ances at Alexan­der Bar, Rock­ing The Daisies and Cape Town World Music Fes­ti­val.
The five-piece com­prises vocals in Span­ish and Roma, Mid­dle East­ern bel­ly­dance and an artillery of instru­ments, rang­ing from dou­ble bass, sax­o­phone and man­dolin to accor­dion, dar­buka and hulusi!

Book now by click­ing the but­ton of the per­for­mance you wish to attend:
Sat 14th Feb 7pm R100 (R90 online) Sat 14th Feb 9pm R100 (R90 online)

Dirty Words

Sketch Com­edy • Run­ning Time: 55 mins
Per­formed by Ali­cia McCormick & Dylan Esbach | cre­ated by Jon Keevy
Warn­ing: Con­tains all the dirty words | no under 18s
Dirty Words was born in the fast and loose cru­cible that is Alexan­der Upstairs’ own monthly exper­i­men­tal plat­form, Play Things. Imme­di­ately it became a cult sen­sa­tion. Filthy, Explicit and incred­i­bly funny… Dirty Words pulls back the cov­ers on erot­ica, chat sex, dirty talk and naughty sexy gram­mar. In seven sketches Ali­cia and Kim turn up the raunch, slip­ping in sexy tongue twisters and bur­lesque shenani­gans.

Warn­ing: con­tains all the dirty words and also some almost nudity.

Press & Reviews

Book now by click­ing the but­ton of the per­for­mance you wish to attend:
Tue 17th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Wed 18th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Thu 19th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Fri 20th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Sat 21st Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Mon 23rd Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Tue 24th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Wed 25th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Thu 26th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Fri 27th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online) Sat 28th Feb 9pm R100 (R80 online)

Naked Girls Read­ing Cape Town presents Queerly Beloved

Live Read­ing • Run­ning Time: 75 mins
Pro­duced by Kelly Smith
Warn­ing: Nudity | No under 18s
Face­book Event
Come and let our read­ers lead you away from tales of the straight and nar­row at the first Naked Girls Read­ing event ded­i­cated to queer writ­ers and LGBTI sto­ries.

What is Naked Girls Read­ing?
Naked Girls Read­ing is a nude lit­er­ary salon that takes place in twenty cities around the world and on five dif­fer­ent con­ti­nents. At each event, a small cast of beau­ti­ful ladies removes their cloth­ing (yes, all of it) and reads per­sonal selec­tions to an ador­ing audi­ence. It is enter­tain­ing, mag­i­cal, often funny, some­times heart wrench­ing and really very sexy.

Are the girls really naked?
Yes, we are.

Is the audi­ence naked?
No, they are not.

There’s some­thing beau­ti­ful, some­thing alto­gether more inti­mate, about a woman read­ing in the nude. It’s just that simple.

Naked Girls Read­ing, called “appro­pri­ately racy” by Enter­tain­ment Weekly and “the best thing to hap­pen to books since they were put on tape…” by Car­son Daly, was founded in Chicago in March of 2009 by Inter­na­tional Show­girl Michelle L’Amour and hus­band Franky Vivid.

Book now by click­ing the but­ton of the per­for­mance you wish to attend:
Sat 21st Feb 5pm R160 (R140 online) Sat 21st Feb 7pm R160 (R140 online)
Click here for a print­able ver­sion of the pro­gramme. (ODT) (Print it out and give to your friends!)
Sub­scribe to our event cal­en­dar:
Using Google Cal­en­der? Import our cal­en­dar into yours to keep your self uptodate!
Or use this iCal url to import into most other cal­en­der sys­tems: iCal URL
Today (Tues­day)

Ashes to Ashes

Keep off the Grass
One Per­son Show

Tomor­row (Wednesday)

Ashes to Ashes

Keep off the Grass
One Per­son Show

This Thurs­day

Ashes to Ashes
29 Jan 7pm

Keep off the Grass
One Per­son Show
29 Jan 9pm

This Fri­day

Ashes to Ashes
30 Jan 7pm

Keep off the Grass
One Per­son Show
30 Jan 9pm

This Sat­ur­day

Ashes to Ashes
31 Jan 7pm

Keep off the Grass
One Per­son Show
31 Jan 9pm


Ashes to Ashes
Tue 3 7pm
Wed 4 7pm
Thu 5 7pm
Fri 6 7pm
Sat 7 7pm

Keep off the Grass
One Per­son Show
Tue 3 9pm
Wed 4 9pm 9pm
Thu 5 9pm
Fri 6 9pm
Sat 7 9pm

Play Things
Open-mic per­for­mance, writ­ing, film & music
Mon 2 8pm

An Extra­or­di­nar­ily Ordi­nary Life
A Musi­cal Mem­oir / Com­edy
Mon 9 8pm
Mon 16 8pm

Porno 88
Table Read­ing | Com­edy
Wed 11 8pm
Thu 12 8pm

Mother City Sketch
Sketch Com­edy
Fri 13 7pm

Ottoman Slap: an itin­er­ant tale through music & dance
Mid­dle East­ern music & dance
Sat 14 7pm 9pm

Dirty Words
Sketch Com­edy
Tue 17 9pm
Wed 18 9pm
Thu 19 9pm
Fri 20 9pm
Sat 21 9pm
Mon 23 9pm
Tue 24 9pm
Wed 25 9pm
Thu 26 9pm
Fri 27 9pm
Sat 28 9pm

Naked Girls Read­ing Cape Town presents Queerly Beloved
Live Read­ing
Sat 21 5pm 7pm

For enquiries please call 021.300.1652.
Browse past shows here