Current and Forthcoming Shows at Alexander Upstairs

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Comedy • Running Time: 60 mins
Written By all the Long Shots - Spontaneously!
Running time may vary

The Long Shots return to Alexander Bar to bring you their hilarious brand of improvised comedy.

Using an audience suggestion as their starting point, the troupe will create improvised scenes right before your eyes: making up characters, dialogue and environments as they go along. Unscripted, unplanned... no one knows what's going to happen! It's the theatrical equivalent of a tightrope walk. With no net!





Book for The Long Shots Improv Comedy! by clicking this button:

Solo Drama • Running Time: 70 mins
Written by Adam Rapp | Directed by Emily Child | Performed by Francis Chouler | Design by Niall Griffin
The South African premier of Nocturne is by arrangement with United Artists

15 years ago, in Joliet, Illinois, a 17 year teenager accidentally runs over and kills his 9 year old sister in a ’69 Buick Electra while driving home from his summer job. The event cracks his life wide open. As the unnamed narrator flees his childhood home to restart his life in a bookshop in New York City, he has nothing but old memories and new books to rebuild his world.

NOCTURNE is the honest and unconventionally moving story of a man dealing with the effects of a life altering incident. It is a clear, arresting recollection of love, hilarity and pain as well as a boldly inspiring reminder of what it is to be human.

Praise for Nocturne:

“Rapp… is an ambitious and prodigiously talented writer” - Charles Isherwood, Variety.

“There is an undeniable, cumulative power to the writing here” - Bruce Weber, The New York Times.

“At once beautiful and haunting, compelling and agonising… a bold, elegant and even funny exploration of how a single moment as the power both to connect us and chance our lives.” - Mark de la Vina, San Jose Mercury News.

Adam Rapp (Playwright)
Adam Rapp is an American novelist, playwright, screenwriter, musician and film director. His play, Red Light Winter, was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2006. Nocturne was first staged in 2001 at the New York Theatre Workshop. Nocturne was awarded Boston’s Elliot Norton Award for Best New Script as well as Best New Play by the independent Reviewers of New England. It was chosen as one of the ten “Best Plays of 2000-2001 by the annual Chronicle of U.S Theatre.

Francis Chouler (Performer)
Francis received his honours degree in Theatre and Performance, cum laude from the University of Cape Town in 2010. He has appeared in four seasons of Shakespeare at Maynardville Open Air theatre (Twelfth Night, As You Like It, Taming of the Shrew and Cardenio). He performed together with Emily Child in Born in The RSA (Baxter Studio Theatre, National Arts Festival, Hilton Festival) directed by Thoko Ntshinga. Francis has performed at the Alexander Bar theatre in Cock by Mike Bartlett and Over There by Mark Ravenhill directed by Fred Abrahamse. Francis is a member of The Long Shots Improv comedy troupe, and performs regularly at the Alexander bar and other venues in the city. This is his first solo theatre show.

Emily Child (Director)
Emily graduated from the University of Cape Town in 2007 with a Theatre and Performance Degree, specializing in Acting. Since then she has worked independently and as a proud member of acclaimed Cape Town based theatre troupe – The Mechanicals. Her work has garnered her numerous awards and nominations including the 2015 Fleur Du Cap for Best Actress for the role of “Laura” in Louis Viljoen’s The Pervert Laura last staged at the The Fugard Theatre. Other theatre projects include Lear, written by William Shakespeare and directed by Guy De Lancey, Champ, written by Louis Viljoen and directed by Greg Karvellas, which travelled to the Edinburgh Festival in 2013, as well as LA based Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre and The Mechanicals’ co-production Urban Death, directed by Jana Wimer. Emily’s one -woman show, based on Dorothy Parker’s short stories, A Certain Lady was directed by Greg Karvellas and performed around Cape Town in 2014. Emily was recently seen at The Baxter Studio Theatre, Grahamstown and Hilton Festivals in Born in the RSA, directed by Thoko Ntshinga as well as Mike Bartlett’s Contractions, at The Alexander Bar’s Upstairs Theatre, directed by Greg Karvellas in February 2016. In 2018 she worked with Karvellas again on Athol Fugard’s Road to Mecca at the Fugard Theatre with Sandra Prinsloo and Marius Weyers.  Emily’s recent  film projects include Beyond the River, directed by Craig Freimond,  and most recently, BBC‘s television series Troy - Fall Of A City  as well as  the HBO series - Warrior- conceptualized by Bruce Lee and released in 2019. Nocturne is her directorial debut.

Press & Reviews

  • Fri 13th Sep 2019 Weekend Special

    "Francis is the perfect storyteller. He creates a focused intensity that is both unnerving and impossible to break away from. He masters the imagery. He is the picture of restraint, clarity and control as he wrestles with the material that is decidedly unsentimental yet heart breaking”

    Review of 'Nocturne' by Megan Furniss for Weekend Special

  • Thu 12th Sep 2019 Theatre Scene CPT

    "[the script’s] blend of bone-dry humour, startling imagery, intelligent satire, and at times sublime poetry, keeps the audience in thrall as they accompany the narrator on his 17-year long journey in the aftermath of life-changing tragedy."

    Review of 'Nocturne' by Dr Beverley Brommert

  • Thu 22nd Aug 2019 Theatre Scene CPT

    "With Rapp’s exquisite text in hand, Chouler knew he had to find the perfect director to cherish the play as much as he does."

    Press Release on Theatrescene Cape Town




Book for Nocturne by clicking the button of the date and time you wish to attend:

Pub Quiz • Running Time: 120 mins
presented by Alexander Bar

Who? What? When? How? Why are you shouting answers at me? Oh, it's because I'm the quiz master and have all kinds of drinkable prizes for the rightest of the righteous. Am I using those words right? Actually, don't answer that question. There will be others soon. And they will be a lot harder. So strap your smarty-pants on over your party-pants because 'Let's Get Quizzical' isn't your ordinary pub quiz. Stock up on strange facts! Prepare for Quiz masters with sexy voices! Thirst for spot prizes that almost 100% will be liquid! And of course there'll be quirky formats and categories like 'Um, Actually' and 'Famous Cats'!
Watch out for our Specialist Nights when we focus on categories like Film & TV or Music.

Ready? Then Let's Get Quizzical!

Kindly note: Quiz tickets are per person (not per team)

Rules:
Each team must have at least 2 people but no more than 6.
Pineapples disguised as people will be counted as people.
Silly team names are compulsory.
The Quiz Master is always right. Even if google says no.
Brains only! No phones, laptops, or encyclopedias!




Book for Let's Get Quizzical by clicking the button of the date and time you wish to attend:

Sketch Comedy (but sexy) • Running Time: 50 mins
Performed by Maggie Gericke & Sanda Shandu | Directed by Andrew Laubscher | Created by Jon Keevy
Warning: Contains all the dirty words and also some almost nudity | 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 Maggie and Sanda turn up the raunch, slipping in sexy tongue twisters and burlesque shenanigans.

Warning: contains all the dirty words

The team!

Andrew Laubscher (Mr Director) is a very sexy Cape Town-based film and theatre actor. Trained at the University of Cape Town (graduated 2007), Laubscher has performed in numerous stage productions both locally and internationally, as well as several feature and short films. Some theatre highlights include: ‘As You Like It’ directed by Geoffrey Hyland; ‘Cosi’ directed by Scott Sparrow; ‘Antony and Cleopatra’ directed by Marthinus Basson; ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ directed by Guy de Lancey; ‘Lovborg’s Women’ directed by Chris Weare (Fleur Du Cap nomination for Best Supporting Actor); ‘Mafeking Road’ directed by Tara Notcutt; ‘A Comedy Of Errors’ directed by Matthew Wild; and ‘Balbesit’ directed by Jaco Bouwer.

In 2014, Andrew won the Fleur de Cap Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Musical for his performance as Riff-Raff in ‘The Rocky Horror Show’, performed at The Fugard Theatre from 2013 - 2015. More recently Laubscher’s theatre work includes ‘The Emissary’ written and directed by Louis Viljoen; ‘The Finkelsteins are Coming to Dinner’ directed by Adrian Collins, ‘Marat/Sade’ directed by Jaco Bouwer; and ‘Tiger Bay’ performed at The Artscape Theatre. In 2018, he acted in the award winning Afrikaans play ‘Swerfgoed’ directed by Tinarie van Wyk Loots.

In 2019, Laubscher made his directorial debut with Gaëtan Schmid’s one man physical theatre play, ‘Zombie Attack!’ which enjoyed a successful tour to the National Arts Festival in Makhanda (fka Grahamstown). 'Dirty Words' will be his time in the director's seat. Come see how he handles it.

Jon Keevy first wrote 'Dirty Words' under the nom de plum of Jack Hardcastle, fictional author of even more fictional erotica. His cover was uh blown almost immediately by the press and so he had to explain to his mum what the play was about. Like many people hustling in the Cape Town theatre industry he has pretend to be able to multi-task as a writer, producer, designer, stagehand, fight choreographer, teacher, barman, husband, and dungeon master (not the sexy kind).

He graduated from UCT in 2007 for the 3rd time with an MA in theatre-making and started making theatre with Bosnian-born director Sanjin Muftic, a long time collaborator on many ill-advised schemes. Together they produced four plays at the National Arts Festival, toured to faraway places like Rwanda and Knysna, ran an underground theatre until the cops shut it down, created projections for operas directed by Lara Bye and generally kept themselves busy.

As a writer Keevy flounces through different genres, from Children’s theatre to saucy sketch comedy, to solo shows dealing with dark South African themes. Most of these he has produced himself or with the aid of ASSITEJ and/or the Theatre Arts Admin Collective.

Maggie Gericke (the Actress) is a performer based in Cape town, she was most recently seen in Peter Schafer's 'Equus' directer by Fred Abramse at Theatre on the Bay and Montecasino in Joburg. She's a graduate of the University of Cape Town's performance programme and has taken parts in independent plays, short films and television adverts. She is looking forward to playing characters closer to her age. She also takes pretty nice photos, writes and illustrates. Her social media game is neglected at best, which is commendable.

Sanda Shandu (the Actor). Raised in Newcastle KZN, Sanda moved to Cape Town in pursuit of a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Organisational Psychology at UCT. Once graduated and acquiring a keenness in performance as an actor/singer from a young age, Sanda worked as a waiter at Stardust Theatrical Dining restaurant. Not so long after he landed his first professional role in 2015 at The Fugard Theatre in David Kramer’s musical 'Orpheus in Africa' as “Richard Collins” during the run of which he entered SABC3’s Presenter Search and finished as a runner up. In 2016 December season he joined forces with David Kramer once again playing various roles in The Fugard’s musical 'District 6: Kanala'. 2017 brought about more work at The Fugard Theatre,  he got the role of “Lucky” in South Africa’s legendary hit musical 'King Kong', which also toured to Johannesburg the same year. He made his Netflix debut in an American teen romantic comedy film 'The Kissing Booth' (2018). After the film's success worldwide he reprised his role 'The Kissing Booth 2' which is set to be released in 2020. In 2018 he joined The Long Shots improvised comedy troupe which performs weekly in and around Cape town. That same year he received his first acting accolades by winning best supporting actor in a musical for his role in 'King Kong' at both the Fleur du Cap and Naledi award ceremonies. Despite these awards he still agreed to deliver 50 minutes of lewd, rude and pun-ridden comedy in 'Dirty Words'.




Book for Dirty Words by clicking the button of the date and time you wish to attend:

Improvisational comedy • Running Time: 120 mins
Running time may vary | Includes and interval

Fast-paced, unpredictable, and hilarious.

Ten of Cape Town's virtuoso actors converge for a night of scenes, songs and games based on audience suggestions. You score the players on a scale of 1 to 5, and after each round, the players with the lowest scores are eliminated.

When only one remains they, are crowned the Maestro! 

Entrance is free of charge, however, you will be given an opportunity to support the theatre by contributing your preferred amount as a donation at the end of the show.





Book for Maestro Improv ™ by clicking this button:
Sun 22nd Sep 6pm: Sorry, sold out

Play • Running Time: 75 mins
Written by Brent Palmer | Directed by Adrian Collins | Starring Dianne Simpson & Brent Palmer

An unsettling yet darkly funny love story between a sassy sex worker and her smooth-talking client. Mike is a classic car dealer, successful and somewhat sleazy. He has the gift of the gab but he’s lonely. He desperately wants to woo Lillian and whisk her off to an exotic Greek island. Lillian, allergic to any form of rescuing or emotional connection, makes it clear to Mike that she will not go. Mike hears Lillian; but being a man who thrives on closing deals will not accept ‘no’ without a good fight.

The Room deals with themes of love, family and isolation. It is about two lonely people trying to get by, attempting to forge a connection, both with hugely tumultuous histories behind them. While the play is emotionally weighty and carries a clear sense of pathos and tragedy, there is also a thread of comedic yet sobering banter that permeates the whole piece. My intention as writer was to flesh out the vulnerability and humanity of the characters in a context that is complex; it’s at once carnal and liberating but also highly restrictive. I was moved and intrigued by the taboo world of the sex worker's domain. I wondered 'what if' a client wanted to disrupt that contract. What would happen? What would happen if real chemistry existed? What would she do? Many stories such as this exist in our popular culture but I wanted to walk this well trodden path and tell this kind of story through my own lens.




Book for The Room by clicking the button of the date and time you wish to attend:

Comedy • Running Time: 60 mins
Written and Directed by: Dara Beth | Exectuive Producer: Ravi Naidoo, Interactive Africa | Produced by The Furies With: Naledi Majola, Michaela Moses, Sesane Sealy, Jade Herbert and Thandi Wiggill

Whether it's prepping for first dates (stressful), going to the gynae (very stressful), learning how to give head (extremely stressful and a little scary), trying to tell your parents that you've had sex and may or may not be pregnant (incredibly stressful and exceptionally scary) or fighting for the attention from the very cute older cheer coach (problematic, but we'll talk about it), nothing is off the table for this Under 17 Cheer Squad.

Delve into the minds of horny teenagers as our team navigates new dance routines and the world of sex.





Book for The Chronicles of Athena, Babes by clicking the button of the date and time you wish to attend:

Open-mic performance, writing, film & music • Running Time: 70 mins
Featuring talented musicians, writers, performers, film-makers, dancers, magicians, comedians and genre-bending folks of all kinds
Running time may vary wildly

Surprises. The unexpected. The unforeseen. If these words fill you with dread then Play Things is not for you. Play Things is a platform for the odd, the eclectic, the unpredictable. It's an open-mic night of multiple genres and styles... we have poetry and comedy, drama and dancing, film and shenanigans. What will you see this time? 

Play Things is the Alexander Bar’s monthly experimental space for performers both established and up-and-coming to showcase anything they might be “playing” around with.

To be involved with Play Things please visit our website.



Book for Play Things by clicking the button of the date and time you wish to attend:

Comedy • Running Time: 90 mins
Created, directed & presented by The Brothers Streep (Dylan Hichens and Simon van Wyk) with Andrew Kerr
This show includes an interval

Join The Brothers Streep for a brand new panel show all about life’s quibbles and how to solve them. Each show Andrew, Dylan and Simon are joined by fellow comedians to answer Agony Aunt letters, debate worst world problems, and discover new life hacks for old troubles.

Hosted by Andrew Kerr (TheatreSports & The Brothers Streep Show), the Brothers bring their love of BBC panel shows (Would I Like To You?, Mock the Week, The Unbelievable Truth, QI), to inspire a fresh outlet for their fun and uplifting look on life.

The Brothers Streep are an acoustic comedy act from Cape Town, South Africa. Performing as both a duo and full band, they have made their mark locally through playing at major South African events such as Rocking the Daisies, Synergy, The Annual Comics Choice Awards and Grahamstown Festival, whilst also broadening their horizons internationally by playing to Anna Paquin on The Graham Norton Show and debuting their first full length show at The Gilded Balloon as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe back in 2010. They are perhaps best known in South Africa for their performance on the first and last episode of SA Idols Season IV.

Formed in 2005 by Dylan Hichens (guitar and vocals) and Simon van Wyk (guitar and vocals), The Brothers spent their early years performing their harmonious blend of comedy and music in the Cape Town band scene, before later branching into the comedy arena. The result is a comedy band where melody and music don't take the back seat to the laughs. Their songs span a variety of topics, from flavoured milk products to Disney princesses, as well as pirates, the economy, movie twists and other day-to-day observations - there's certainly something for everyone with The Brothers Streep.

When they're not playing music, the Brothers have also been known to host radio shows and produce podcasts, their most recent being The Brothers 




Book for Agony Uncles by clicking the button of the date and time you wish to attend:

Theatre • Running Time: 50 mins
Performed and co-written by Faeron Wheeler and Erika Marais | Directed by Sue Diepeveen | Produced by F Creations

A woman should have it all – a career and a family! But what if you don’t? Karlien and Caitlyn are at their 20 year reunion, bracing for the “So? What have you been up to?” questions. One has the family, the other the career. Neither is sure they have what they want.

Your Perfect Life won a 2019 Standard Bank Ovation Award at the National Arts Festival in Makhanda (formerly known as Grahamstown).

F Creations is proud to present Your Perfect Life – a loosely autobiographical story, inspired by the lives of the writers and performers: Erika Marais and Faeron Wheeler. They play Karlien and Caitlyn, who were close friends in high school but attending different universities and having to make grown up decisions just got in the way. It’s now twenty years later and they couldn’t be more different.

As the one-time friends reminisce about their high school years, ex-boyfriends and all the fun they had, it’s almost hard to imagine why they haven’t kept in touch. Your Perfect Life is a poignant and funny look at how life can take unexpected turns and how society judges us for dealing with it the best way we can.

“a well-rounded performance filled with the … nerves that surface during a dreaded reunion day” – The Herald Spotlight

“very thought provoking” – Rachelle Scott, audience member

“Wheeler and Marais held nothing back … a thoroughly entertaining piece of local theatre” – Cape Town Theatre Desk


“It’s been a long journey getting to this point, and winning a Standard Bank Ovation Award at the National Arts Festival up in Makhanda this year was just incredible,” say Faeron Wheeler (producer, writer, performer). “The feedback from audience members was really great too. Young and old, male and female, they all said that the characters and the emotions resonated with them. I guess, we all do it – look at other people’s lives and compare ourselves to them – all the time.”

The idea for this play first sparked when the two real-life friends, Erika Marais and Faeron Wheeler, were struck time and again by how close they were despite leading such vastly different lives. They also regularly have a good eye roll at how society judges women for not managing to do it all. It’s a conversation the pair have had many times and turning it into a play seemed like the natural progression.

As a testament to women for women, director Sue Diepeveen was brought in to help steer Your Perfect Life from conversations over catch-up coffees to a thoughtful, funny and truthful take on women’s lives. We all know that other people’s lives aren’t perfect, but we can’t help thinking that somehow, they are.




Book for Your Perfect Life by clicking the button of the date and time you wish to attend:
Click here for a printable version of the programme. (ODT) (Print it out and give to your friends!)
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Schedule

Today (Monday)



Tomorrow (Tuesday)


Nocturne
Solo Drama
at 7pm

This Wednesday


Nocturne
Solo Drama
18 Sep at 7pm
Let's Get Quizzical
Pub Quiz
18 Sep at 7pm

This Thursday


Nocturne
Solo Drama
19 Sep at 7pm
Dirty Words
Sketch Comedy (but sexy)
Filthy, Explicit and incredibly funny… Dirty Words19 Sep at 9pm

This Friday


Nocturne
Solo Drama
20 Sep at 7pm
Dirty Words
Sketch Comedy (but sexy)
Filthy, Explicit and incredibly funny… Dirty Words20 Sep at 9pm

This Saturday


Nocturne
Solo Drama
21 Sep at 7pm
Dirty Words
Sketch Comedy (but sexy)
Filthy, Explicit and incredibly funny… Dirty Words21 Sep at 9pm

Rest of September


Maestro Improv ™
Improvisational comedy
Sun 22 at 6pm
The Room
Play
Mon 23 at 7pm
Tue 24 at 7pm
Wed 25 at 7pm
Thu 26 at 7pm
Fri 27 at 7pm
Sat 28 at 7pm
Dirty Words
Sketch Comedy (but sexy)
Filthy, Explicit and incredibly funny… Dirty WordsTue 24 at 9pm
Wed 25 at 9pm
Thu 26 at 9pm
Fri 27 at 9pm
Sat 28 at 9pm
Let's Get Quizzical
Pub Quiz
Wed 25 at 7pm

October


The Room
Play
Tue 1 at 7pm
Wed 2 at 7pm
Thu 3 at 7pm
Fri 4 at 7pm
Sat 5 at 7pm
The Chronicles of Athena, Babes
Comedy
Tue 1 at 9pm
Wed 2 at 9pm
Thu 3 at 9pm
Fri 4 at 9pm
Sat 5 at 9pm
Play Things
Open-mic performance, writing, film & music
New writ­ing, exper­i­ments, mono­logues, physical theatre, film, and music.Mon 7 at 8pm
Agony Uncles
Comedy
Mon 14 at 8pm
Your Perfect Life
Theatre
Thu 24 at 9pm
Fri 25 at 9pm
Sat 26 at 9pm

November


Play Things
Open-mic performance, writing, film & music
New writ­ing, exper­i­ments, mono­logues, physical theatre, film, and music.Mon 4 at 8pm
Agony Uncles
Comedy
Mon 11 at 8pm