Join me on a non-stop ride on blue,  breathless days and dark, velvety nights.
The rain will make you dance. The kaleidoscope is in my head

This is what I am talking about ...

  • All
  • Africa
  • Art
  • Cape Town
  • charity
  • Drink
  • Featured
  • Feeding scheme
  • Food
  • Fuel
  • Gossip
  • Innovation
  • International development
  • Joburg
  • Lifestyle
  • Make a difference
  • Media
  • Money and power
  • Mother City of Innovation
  • Music
  • Psssst! Look Here.
  • Renewables
  • Retirement
  • Technology
  • Theatre
  • Travel
  • Volunteer

There is more than one fairytale in dazzling new Sleeping Beauty

Sleeping Beauty is an enduring and wonderful story, but the real fairytale in Cape Town City Ballet’s new production on Saturday August 17 was to see the extraordinarily talented Precious Adams dancing in her own ‘skin’. Adams, of the English National Ballet, is a black dancer who wears tights and shoes that match her natural …

There is more than one fairytale in dazzling new Sleeping Beauty Read More »

Will your retirement savings last as long as you do?

For some people moving into retirement means that all their concerns disappear as if by magic; for the rest of us there is a great new downloadable e-book from 10X Investments: How to make your retirement savings last. The e-book is designed to help South Africans decide what to do with their retirement fund savings. …

Will your retirement savings last as long as you do? Read More »

The musical gets remixed and totally rebooted

Review: Kinky Boots, at the Fugard Theatre in Cape Town, until October 27 Even the most curmudgeonly of curmudgeons will find it hard not to be cheered by this lovely show. Haters of the musical format, too, will be forced to crack a smile at how the cheesy formula of a preachy but ultimately uplifting …

The musical gets remixed and totally rebooted Read More »

Cape Town gets a taste of the feast of ballet that awaits

Opening her first season as chief executive the Cape Town City Ballet, Debbie Turner gives us a taste of what is to come. We get flavours of a very wide repertoire and hints of what her appointment will mean for theatre lovers in Cape Town. The triple bill, showing at Artscape Opera House from June …

Cape Town gets a taste of the feast of ballet that awaits Read More »

One-man show cracks head, then heart, wide open

Review: Kafka’s Ape, Alexander Bar until June 22, after that at National Arts Festival in Makhanda, formerly known as Grahamstown Adapted and directed by Phala O. Phala; original design by Liesel N. Retief Performed by Tony Bonani Miyambo If Tony Miyambo’s performance in Kafka’s Ape wasn’t so riveting the goings on on-stage would quickly have …

One-man show cracks head, then heart, wide open Read More »

Busty bombshells bare more than their beautiful butts

Along with the full dose of bitchiness and belly laughs, the Trolley Dollies take the audience into their confidence and a little deeper into the life of a drag queen in their new show, NON-Specific, at Gate 69. ‘Choosing’ to be a woman in a man’s world can be fabulously funny, but it is definitely …

Busty bombshells bare more than their beautiful butts Read More »

Adding meaning to my life … washing dishes

In my 50th year, a year of great abundance (I celebrated my birthday with my beloved and dear friends in Istanbul, I was given a wetsuit and I started doing yoga regularly, to mention just a few highlights), the best thing that has happened to me is a morning shift once a week at a …

Adding meaning to my life … washing dishes Read More »

Food and wine that (almost) tops the art

Layers and layers of pleasure, in every colour and shape, have been added week by week as we have popped in often, for a minute or so much more. Sometimes we linger and go on a journey from room to room; other times we pop in and head somewhere in particular for a quick fix. …

Food and wine that (almost) tops the art Read More »

Fabulous fabulous leads and a whole lot more

Review: West Side Story, Fugard Theatre production at Artscape opera house Run extended until April 22 In this mad and fast-moving world appetites change constantly, attention spans narrow and it is easy to dismiss things as old or tired. That said, this fabulous pairing of a sensational Maria and a reliable and gorgeous Tony in …

Fabulous fabulous leads and a whole lot more Read More »

The grocery store we’ve all been waiting for

I am just back from my first visit to Nude Foods, the grocery store we have all been waiting for! I do mean all of us. Cape Town’s new plastic-free grocer is heaven for hipsters, for sure, with its hemp seeds, healthy hair products and earth-friendly body and home products, and a veritable lezzer nirvana …

The grocery store we’ve all been waiting for Read More »

Am I beautiful? Oh yes I am!

    What a treat to see Zanele Muholi profiled in the Weekend FT.  It brought to mind my first encounter with the riveting work of this activist-photographer … GRAHAMSTOWN, July 8 2016: In this challenging two-part exhibition at the Standard Bank Gallery as part of the annual National Arts Festival, photographer and activist Zanele …

Am I beautiful? Oh yes I am! Read More »

Very familiar and completely vreemd

How I wished I didn’t have to read the surtitles in Moedertaal. Whenever I listened to the Afrikaans words spoken by Sandra Prinsloo I understood snatches of a beautiful, lyrical Afrikaans that cannot be translated. When I heard the Afrikaans and saw the translations in English I wanted to shout out: “That is not what …

Very familiar and completely vreemd Read More »

Spekbombing and other suburban dreams

As the windy season gets underway in the Cape of Hope and Storms we sit on a couple of ticking timebombs, one of them a natural disaster of epic proportions. Many of us feel helpless in the face of the corruption and the selling off of the state. The ANC, founder of the Rainbow Nation, …

Spekbombing and other suburban dreams Read More »

Zeitz Mocaa: It’s about us

Even in Milan, in London, in New York and other art-obsessed places it would have been difficult this week to totally escape the hype around the opening of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz Mocaa), the world’s largest museum of contemporary African art, in Cape Town. In the Mother City, too, there was …

Zeitz Mocaa: It’s about us Read More »

Pleasing to the mind, the body and the soul

If it feels too good to be true, it probably is, the saying goes. Too good to be true = couldn’t be better … or could it? It was certainly dreamy enough watching a wonderfully varied programme of top quality dance at the SAIBC International Ballet Gala at the Artscape recently, with professional dancers from as …

Pleasing to the mind, the body and the soul Read More »

Swing into spring in downtown Cape Town

Gangsters and their molls, bootleggers, poets and playwrights, flappers and assorted dandies … just another night at your favourite tavern in town, you might think, but Cape Town’s monthly swing nights, which are launching on 1 September at the Reserve at the Taj, promise a whole lot more. As winter breathes its last misty breaths, …

Swing into spring in downtown Cape Town Read More »

Give reality the slip at the Wild Coast 

The more things have changed the more they have stayed the same since the days when it was one of ‘Sun King’ Sol Kerzner’s original palaces of relaxation and fun in the nominally independent Bantustans of apartheid era South Africa. The resort – set on 750 hectares of natural bush on the Indian Ocean Coast, where the sun always seems to shine – continues to offer a haven from the chill and the rest of reality outside. …

Give reality the slip at the Wild Coast  Read More »

Dump maths? Sounds like a race to the bottom

10X Investments called on South Africa’s Department of Basic Education this week to reconsider the “potentially catastrophic proposal” to remove mathematics as a pass requirement in the education system. “Just when you thought we needed to raise our game in terms of maths literacy, the national education department starts a consultation on lowering the standards,” …

Dump maths? Sounds like a race to the bottom Read More »

Lest we forget …

Cheers to Sarajevo, which is showing at the Alexander Bar until Saturday July 8, is one of those universal stories about people who are not supposed to fall in love. This story about a love affair between a Serbian man and a Bosnian woman during the captured and corrupt times of the Yugoslavian war feels …

Lest we forget … Read More »

The normalisation of madness

A number of insights during a debate at the University of Cape Town – Betrayal of the Promise: Understanding South Africa’s Political Crisis – came from the youngest panel member Sikhulekile Duma, a researcher at the Centre for Complex Systems in Transition at Stellenbosch University. One, in particular, resonated with me when he talked about …

The normalisation of madness Read More »

New classics infused with ancient African tradition

A Nigerian Kora player, a South African composer, a Kenyan master of ceremonies and Western Cape Premier Helen Zille were among musicians, VIPs and invited guests gathered at Iziko Museum in Cape Town to listen to “new classics” in celebration of the 54th anniversary of Africa Day on Thursday. After being warmed up by a …

New classics infused with ancient African tradition Read More »

Musical feast at Durban’s beachfront festival

Durbanites look set to get a lot more than “what is needed” this weekend, May 26-28, when a star-studded line-up from around the world plays on two stages at the third annual Zakifo Music Festival at Blue Lagoon Beach. “Sakifo means what is needed in Creole,” says Jerome Galabert, one of the event’s co founders. …

Musical feast at Durban’s beachfront festival Read More »

Artists given licence to disrupt (as if they needed it)

2017 looks like the year disruption will come full circle at Grahamstown’s National Arts Festival, from June 29 to July 9. Last year’s call for proposals urged, challenged, prodded and provoked the original disruptors – artists – to shake things up a bit. We have just a few weeks to wait to see how they responded. Urging dare devils and …

Artists given licence to disrupt (as if they needed it) Read More »

Back by popular demand: #FeesMustFall

Back by popular demand! The Fall will be showing at Baxter Golden Arrow Studio from June 8 to 24. Professor Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, Research Chair of Studies in Historical Trauma and Transformation at Stellenbosch University, wrote of The Fall: “With all the images of violence in the media, it can be easy to lose sight of …

Back by popular demand: #FeesMustFall Read More »

Precious drinking water running down the toilet

As water experts gather for seminars to discuss the Cape’s crisis and pop groups record songs to help people manage the time they spend in the shower, thousands of litres of drinking water continues to run down the toilet. Robert Ince, from Cape Town-based company Bob The Plumber, says there are many small and effective ways …

Precious drinking water running down the toilet Read More »

Education crisis ‘the civil rights struggle of the day’

Respected African elder statesman Jakaya Kikwete told the World Economic Forum’s Africa meetings in Durban that the education crisis in Africa was today’s civil rights struggle, and called on leaders in the developed and developing worlds to act urgently. Tanzania’s former president was speaking in his capacity as Special Envoy for the Education Commission, a global …

Education crisis ‘the civil rights struggle of the day’ Read More »

A connection, a picture, a story is worth a million miles

Star Alliance is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a worldwide competition celebrating cultural connections made by travellers in which entrants stand a chance to win a million frequent flyer miles. Jeffrey Goh, Star Alliance chief executive, said: “As part of our 20th anniversary, we are celebrating the strength of human and cultural connections. In order …

A connection, a picture, a story is worth a million miles Read More »

Afropunk is coming to Africa (Jozi strikes gold again)

Johannesburg will in December join New York, Atlanta, London and Paris as cities hosting global Afropunk events. The first batch of performers for the inaugural festival on December 30 and 31 – “two nights of music, style, art and food” on the city’s Constitution Hill – was announced by Sal Masekela at an event at …

Afropunk is coming to Africa (Jozi strikes gold again) Read More »

Think out of the box, put the farm into one

In this age of Eat Local campaigns, one might be a little alarmed to encounter vegetables called rucola, petite-this and mange-that, on a plate in the Nigerian capital, but fear not, Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja told a briefing at the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Africa 2017 meetings in Durban, these micro greens are not just grown …

Think out of the box, put the farm into one Read More »

A break from life’s fools, double crossers, wrecking balls …

A motley crew of fools, an evil seductress and many a double crosser mucking about, stabbing each other in the back, wrecking the place. Sound familiar? The good news is that this is the theatre: art imitating life, one might say. That said, The Play That Goes Wrong, showing at the Theatre on the Bay …

A break from life’s fools, double crossers, wrecking balls … Read More »

Move over Barbs, here’s another fab Funny Girl

If you don’t believe me when I say the Fugard Theatre’s production of Funny Girl, the musical, is better than the movie, you’ll shout ‘Liar, liar, pants on fire!’ when you hear me say Ashleigh Harvey as Fanny Brice is even more Barbra than Streisand. What can I say … the bitter-sweet musical drama based …

Move over Barbs, here’s another fab Funny Girl Read More »

INewspapers: Relevant? Trustworthy? Worth paying for?

As South African media outlets search desperately for direction and relevance – tripping over hurdles, slipping on shelly beaches, falling onto swords – a quick look at the UK’s Guardian newspaper on Wednesday morning gives a timely reminder of how great journalism can be. Few would deny that the media has a crucial role to …

INewspapers: Relevant? Trustworthy? Worth paying for? Read More »

Take one HQ, add a large portion of Bizerca …

 Cape Town foodies will be interested to hear the news that the chef and owner of Bistrot Bizerca, Laurent Deslandes, will be joining the team at HQ, another Mother City favourite, as group executive chef. The combination of these two celebrated brands means patrons at HQ can look forward to ‘HQ Courtyard by Laurent’ serving …

Take one HQ, add a large portion of Bizerca … Read More »

A jazz festival but not just for jazz fans

Let me widen the deep green circle of envy that surrounds holders of tickets to the Cape Town International Jazz Festival (CTIJF) beyond lovers of jazz. The annual sellout event is a diverse musical feast that mixes styles and expands genres in delightful and surprising ways that would please anyone who likes music – or …

A jazz festival but not just for jazz fans Read More »

If you can’t stand the heat get off the fence

It was hard to ignore the heat (or the irony) on Monday as a group of scientists told occupants in a sweltering hall on a quayside at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town that they hoped evidence gathered during a three month circumnavigation of Antarctica would “prove convincing to those politicians who have been sitting …

If you can’t stand the heat get off the fence Read More »

A feast fit for foodies as casino cooks up a change

The ‘hautest’ of foodies might look down on the casino complex culture otherwise so popular in South Africa … but perhaps not for long, if a recent lunch at the Chef’s Table at soon-to-opened Time Square at Menlyn Maine in Pretoria is anything to go by. The R4 billion Time Square development, which will be …

A feast fit for foodies as casino cooks up a change Read More »

Yoco, poster child of SA as global fintech hub

Local startup Yoco’s successfully concluded foreign funding round, announced on Wednesday, has been described as a vote of confidence in South Africa’s growing fintech ecosystem. The South African startup told a media briefing in Cape Town that it had secured funding commitments for an undisclosed sum from U.S.-based Quona Capital and Velocity Capital of the …

Yoco, poster child of SA as global fintech hub Read More »

Young Africa Works: Making farming sexy

A beautiful, noisy thunder shower greeted delegates arriving in Kigali, Rwanda, for the Mastercard Foundation’s second annual Young Africa Works Summit in late February 2017, shattering expectations of cracked skin and dry taps after a terrible year of drought in many parts of Africa . The trip from the airport to the Marriott Hotel, where …

Young Africa Works: Making farming sexy Read More »

Salt River shows off its sexy new look

It has been the brightest of weeks in Salt River and scores of people from all over Cape Town and beyond are expected to come out to celebrate this weekend. More than 30 artists have painted the suburb every shade of red and many others besides during Cape Town’s first International Public Art Festival. Every …

Salt River shows off its sexy new look Read More »

Oh what a wonderful world … whatever the critics say

South Africa’s first International Public Art Festival is in full swing in Salt River with artists and local children changing the suburb by the day. Long a lover of graffiti, I have swung by a few times this week and every time have found plenty of artists at work creating gob-smacking murals. The work is …

Oh what a wonderful world … whatever the critics say Read More »

The work speaks for itself, meet me at the wall!

Mak1one looked like he was made for the stage at the launch of Cape Town’s International Public Art Festival in Salt River on Friday, but he clearly couldn’t wait to get off it and back to the wall he is painting as part of the festival. The well-known Cape Town street artist said he was …

The work speaks for itself, meet me at the wall! Read More »

Calm speech belies chaos at Sona, wider crisis

What a difference 10 minutes can make! Once Parliament had been cleared of his most vocal opponents, many of them by force, President Jacob Zuma started a State of the Nation Address (Sona) that would have seemed fitting in the most sedate of countries. His final Sona as leader of the African National Congress started …

Calm speech belies chaos at Sona, wider crisis Read More »

Artists climb the walls to paint them at public art fest

If you thought Cape Town’s art scene was getting a little crowded, think again. If the rowdy response to the Mother City’s newest art festival is anything to go by there is still a lot of space for growth … thousands of metres of outdoor space, in fact. The inaugural International Public Art Festival (Ipaf) …

Artists climb the walls to paint them at public art fest Read More »

Creativity on the streets with a craft beer, Cape Town-style

The Mother City’s newest art festival promises to bring art lovers out of the galleries and on to the streets – and they will possibly be swapping their delicate glasses of bubbles for craft beers. Baz-Art, the company behind next month’s inaugural International Public Art Festival (IPAF), is a non-profit organisation that has been described …

Creativity on the streets with a craft beer, Cape Town-style Read More »

Suspend disbelief … again, but this time for fun

It was not immediately clear if an inaugural event held at a venue cunningly named Truth on Monday night was a continuation of the global shakeup set in motion when the good people of once-cool Britannia voted to cut their final remaining tie to coolness by ‘Brexiting’. It was also hard to shake the suspicion …

Suspend disbelief … again, but this time for fun Read More »

Art hits the streets of Cape Town

In a taste of what is to come in February at Cape Town’s newest art festival, two artists will this Sunday put on a live “performance”, making a 7m wide work of art in downtown Cape Town. Bringing art out of the hushed and hallowed spaces of galleries, Wayne BKS, who goes by the aliases …

Art hits the streets of Cape Town Read More »

Superstars and super lots at Cape wine auction for great cause

Imagine the rich and the famous gathered at a gorgeous wine estate eating lunch and bidding against society’s stylish superstars for stays in a beach paradise (helicopters and butlers included) and cases of wine from France’s Loire Valley. Pretty stellar, huh? Now add the fact that all money raised goes to supporting education in the …

Superstars and super lots at Cape wine auction for great cause Read More »

The road to urban bliss: Open Streets

On Sunday January 15 Cape Town city centre will become a picture of idyllic urban living as skateboarders skate, painters paint and children play along Bree and Longmarket streets, which will be closed to motorised traffic for the day. Open Streets City Centre is the latest in a series of street closures across the breadth …

The road to urban bliss: Open Streets Read More »

Take one freshly pressed new year, add some magic …

As New Year’s resolutions go, “adding magic” is pretty impressive. And, for magic fans living in the Mother City, there isn’t even much conjuring required with the Cape Town Magic Club opening for Monday Night Magic Season 3 on January 16. After two successful seasons of Monday Night Magic at Cape Town Club in Gardens, …

Take one freshly pressed new year, add some magic … Read More »

Painting a new picture of Africa

There will be many elements of a self portrait – idealist, realist and all the ‘ists’ in between – as the inaugural Art Africa Fair, which opens in February, helps paint a new picture of the continent. Issuing a call for submissions on Wednesday the art fair’s organisers asked artists and gallerists “to propose work …

Painting a new picture of Africa Read More »

Brits get a taste of desert gold in their G&T

The Gods must indeed be crazy! Britons looking for something exotic to mix with their tonic at end-of-year cocktail events will be able to spice things up a little this year with some flavours of the Kalahari in KWV’s boutique-style handcrafted gin, Cruxland. Angie Jacobs, brand manager for KWV’s premium spirits in South Africa, said …

Brits get a taste of desert gold in their G&T Read More »

Things heat up for polar expedition from Cape

Things were heating up at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town this weekend as 50 scientists from around the globe prepared for the groundbreaking three-month polar expedition – the Antarctic Circumnavigation Expedition (ACE) – due to set off from the Mother City on Tuesday. Young and old gathered to listen to 49 singing scientists and …

Things heat up for polar expedition from Cape Read More »

Spier shares cash from carbon credits with workers

Workers at the Spier estate in Stellenbosch in South Africa’s winelands will have a little extra to spend this Christmas after the farm decided to divide a portion of cash earned via carbon credits. Spier announced on Tuesday that it would give 27 workers a share of half of the R204,000 earned for practising regenerative …

Spier shares cash from carbon credits with workers Read More »

Local choirs, bands add to festive fun at Artscape

Starting on Friday, theatregoers attending shows at Artscape in Cape Town will get an extra little something festive thrown in when local choirs and bands stage free performances on the theatre’s piazza. The programme kick offs on Friday evening with a performance by the Khayelitsha-based United Choral Artists. Artscape said the non-governmental organisation, which uses …

Local choirs, bands add to festive fun at Artscape Read More »

Cape Town gets preview of polar expedition

An exhibition about the soon-to-depart Antarctic Circumnavigation Expedition (ACE) was taking shape at the V&A Waterfront on Wednesday in preparation for its opening on Thursday morning. Visitors to the House of Switzerland exhibition, celebrating the three-month expedition, will get a preview of how this Swiss-funded expedition will expand knowledge about the largely unknown region that …

Cape Town gets preview of polar expedition Read More »

Local is lekker: Hyperli steps into space left by Groupon

Bargain hunters will be pleased to hear that Hyperli, a hyperlocal hypermarket of a deal website, on Wednesday promised to fill the space left when the international discounting business Groupon exited South Africa last month. Groupon groupees were left feeling short-changed by what seemed to be a sudden exit in early November. At the time, …

Local is lekker: Hyperli steps into space left by Groupon Read More »

Grab a child (your inner child will do)

Review: Annie the musical at Artscape Theatre, Cape Town, until January 8 As I thought my grown-up thoughts the little girl in the row behind me singing along joyfully and tunelessly to every song and confidently repeating bits of the narrative reminded me that everything would be alright tomorrow. It might well be the Hard …

Grab a child (your inner child will do) Read More »

Power + grace = survival

Review: Sacred Spaces by Cape Dance Company, Artscape Theatre in Cape Town until December 10   At a time when the arts – like journalism and even life as we know it – seems to be under threat of extinction, Sacred Spaces gives us a peek at a wide scope of what survival might look …

Power + grace = survival Read More »

Sun City: not so naughty, twice as nice

Government ministers, business people and representatives from the media joined a host of entertainers including fire throwers, stilt walkers, dancers and a scattering of Miss South Africas, past and probably future, at Sun City this week to celebrate the resort’s relaunch after a R1 billion makeover. The jewel in Sun International’s crown, which opened (as …

Sun City: not so naughty, twice as nice Read More »

Shopping sites in Black Friday meltdown

Shoppers and techies across South Africa were red-faced on Friday morning as popular shopping websites melted under the pressure of their own popularity on Black Friday. Bargain-hunters logging on as late as 7am couldn’t load up the pages at all. Instead they received error pages saying: temporary glitch, come back later, Oops and Awkward. More …

Shopping sites in Black Friday meltdown Read More »

Music (directly) to the ears

In what must be music to the ears of music-loving gym-bunnies, Samsung Electronics South Africa launched its Gear IconX earbuds, “a genuinely unrestricted way to enjoy music while exercising”. “Most people love to listen to their favourite songs when working out, but it is all too easy to get wrapped up in wires, rather than the …

Music (directly) to the ears Read More »

Your call is important to us …

 I am unlikely to be alone in hoping that my bank – which seems to have outsourced its helpdesk operations to some distant, possibly hellishly hot place – will soon heed Clickatell’s call for a transformation in customer support. The unsatisfied, frequently unserviced South African customer can but dream of a day when a combination …

Your call is important to us … Read More »

Crowd-funding: almost as old as the hills in Africa

The idea behind crowd-funding, raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people via the internet to finance a project, might not be quite as old as the hills, but in Africa it certainly has very old and deep roots. As Patrick Schofield, pictured left, the founder of Thundafund, Africa’s most successful …

Crowd-funding: almost as old as the hills in Africa Read More »

Part-circus, part-riot, 100% fun

Review: Cirque Éloize ID at Artscape Everyone in Cirque Éloize — whose show, ID, is on at Artscape in Cape Town until Sunday November 27 — is eloquent in “body”, a language we can all understand yet only a tiny minority will ever master. It is a trip and a treat to watch these acrobats, …

Part-circus, part-riot, 100% fun Read More »

The future: watching you from dashboard

Watching demos by MTN and Huawei at the Africa.com conference in Cape Town this week was a wake-up call for at least one person in deep denial about the arrival of the future being some way off. These demos suggested that the future is here and most of us are already actively in it. (Readers terrified …

The future: watching you from dashboard Read More »

Building a house Africa-style: one step at a time

  Innovation is required in the financial services sector in Africa to provide funding products for households who build their own homes bit by bit. Either way, it will continue to happen, says the head of the Centre for Affordable Housing Finance in Africa. Kecia Rust told a panel at the African Real Estate and Infrastructure …

Building a house Africa-style: one step at a time Read More »

Behind every strong woman …

Back by popular demand: Another chance to see this lovely show. For South Africans of a certain vintage it feels like Tannie Evita Bezuidenhout has always been there. A total maverick and kind of mumsy, she always makes us laugh and helps to recalibrate our moral compass. In The Echo of a Noise, playing at …

Behind every strong woman … Read More »

When the journey is the destination

Sometimes one goes there and back just to see how far it is, this was a day like that. A steam train trip from Cape Town to Ceres and back on a hot, still Saturday in November made us feel that we had all the time in the world to do nothing but chill, chat, …

When the journey is the destination Read More »

Vergelegen wins global wine tourism award

Western Cape vineyard Vergelegen was among wineries celebrated on Thursday night at the 2017 international “Best Of Wine Tourism” awards ceremony at the Sao Bento da Vitoria Monastery in Porto, Portugal. The awards are sponsored by the Great Wine Capitals Global Network, a network of global cities in the northern and southern hemispheres that include …

Vergelegen wins global wine tourism award Read More »

#Trumpexit: let’s start a revolution

Brexit, Trump and the beginning of the end … Imagine if we really have reached that tipping point, the archduke has been assassinated … what will you do on this momentous day? Maybe slow down a little, spread a little kindness, give a stranger a leg-up (no #GrinderFriends I did not say a leg-over), forgive a mistake – …

#Trumpexit: let’s start a revolution Read More »

From ship to shop: V&A spends another R37m on passenger terminal

The V&A Waterfront on Thursday marked the launch of 2016/17 cruise season by announcing that another R37 million would be invested in the terminal that receives passengers. As passengers disembarked from the German luxury liner, the Europa, the first arrival of the season, David Green, chief executive officer of the V&A Waterfront, announced the next …

From ship to shop: V&A spends another R37m on passenger terminal Read More »

SA-Iran trade desk holds key to ‘dream market’ for SA business

In addition to helping with numerous necessary evils, such as advice on tax, regulation and visas, the newly launched South Africa-Iran Trade Desk (SAIRTD), promises to introduce South African companies to a “dream market” of young, educated, urban Iranians newly freed from the restrictions of global sanctions. As Hameed Amouhadi, the SAIRTD’s chairman, told the audience …

SA-Iran trade desk holds key to ‘dream market’ for SA business Read More »

Her name is Vega

Have just been reminded of this sensational night three years ago. I remember how I felt … in the finest detail . Come back #SuzanneVega (November 2 2013) Held up to the standards of the Madonnas and the Gagas she might as well have been naked. Hers is a show without gimmicks: just heart, hands …

Her name is Vega Read More »

Two guys and an awful lot of demons

In life, as in art, there is much to watch in Cape Town right now: the party implodes, the edifice crumbles. Taking a break from real life drama, I saw Keith Huff’s award-winning Broadway hit A Steady Rain during its run at the Fugard after a sold out run at Alexander Bar. The relentless drama made me feel a …

Two guys and an awful lot of demons Read More »

Making money in the wildest of ways

Throwing the old economy-versus-environment argument into question, Wilderness Holdings on Friday reported good progress on both sides of the equation in the six months to the end of August, including a reforestation project in Rwanda and a 22 percent increase in after-tax profit. Profit at the company, which combines ownership of safari camps with support …

Making money in the wildest of ways Read More »

The future is here (almost) and it is fast and loose

Residents in at least one leafy suburban street (mine) in Cape Town are facing down noisy chaos this morning with the unannounced arrival of workmen to dig up the street and lay fibre. Alerted by a lot of unusual noise in the street this Devils Peak resident went out to discover a large team of workmen …

The future is here (almost) and it is fast and loose Read More »

State transformed SABMiller deal for South Africans

Some bad news is emerging around the AB Inbev-SABMiller merger with the pound’s so-called flash-crash having knocked quite a bit of value off the deal for South African shareholders. The transaction will complete at a significantly lower exchange rate than when it was agreed (something like R18 to the pound instead of R22). There is some sadness for brand-conscious …

State transformed SABMiller deal for South Africans Read More »

On the road and in bed with dance at Baxter

The opening night of the Baxter Dance Festival on Thursday took us on a trip and then gave us a whole lot of loving. First John Linden’s Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking held us riveted, reminding us of how it felt to be On the Road with Jack Kerouac, or even John Steinbeck. Then the …

On the road and in bed with dance at Baxter Read More »

FNB combines new tech and old-fashioned values

As First National Bank launched its new super hi-tech mobile banking app on Wednesday the bank’s chief executive, Jacques Celliers, made the point that the bank’s pursuit of ever-sexier hi-tech solutions was driven by old-fashioned values such as helpfulness and customer service. The latest version of the FNB mobile banking app, 5.0, includes a range …

FNB combines new tech and old-fashioned values Read More »

Low calorie, low alcohol wine – not to be confused with tea

Rooibos and Honeybush, long-time luvvies of the local tea-drinking scene, have been elevated to a different class altogether by news that they have achieved fame in the global world of Intellectual Property (IP) as well as a new super power. It is well-known that the tasty and healthy teas have a dedicated following in South …

Low calorie, low alcohol wine – not to be confused with tea Read More »

Taking people watching to new heights at the V&A

The V & A Waterfront will be teeming with all sorts of showmen and showgirls, tricksters and tramps next weekend when it hosts the first ever Cape Town Buskers’ Festival from October 6-9. The Waterfront, as the most visited destination in Africa, has always been a place to people watch and for buskers to interact …

Taking people watching to new heights at the V&A Read More »

Cape Town overtakes Bali as best value for long haul

Cape Town Tourism’s chief executive, Enver Duminy, this week talked about “affordable luxury” as he welcomed the news that the Mother City had been named best-value best value long haul destination in the world. The UK Post Office Travel Money Report 2016, released earlier this month, measures countries based on the price of a basket …

Cape Town overtakes Bali as best value for long haul Read More »

#FeesMustFall: good call, badly executed

I have been struggling to decide how I feel about the student protests. I have feel a deep sympathy for the students and support their demand to be heard. I have also felt rather ashamed at what a mess we, the adults, have made of things. But then I have also been appalled by the behaviour of …

#FeesMustFall: good call, badly executed Read More »

‘Wickedly funny?’ I am in!

Gate69, Cape Town’s newest theatre venue, opens with a bang this Spring with a production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, the iconic rock musical. Anything billed as wickedly funny has got our attention! But that is not enough for reviewers of the musical by John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask … “Groundbreaking,” they cry, “undoubtedly …

‘Wickedly funny?’ I am in! Read More »

No Corona. No poncho. Surely not Mexican?

Mexico’s most famous chef, Jorge Vallejo, says South Africans seem to have similar problems to his countrymen when it comes to international image. Vallejo, who is in South Africa to take part in a collaboration with local gastronomical star Luke Dale-Roberts, said the problem was with how foreigners saw us. He shared this view with …

No Corona. No poncho. Surely not Mexican? Read More »

A little something my friends put on

All About That Jazz: Small act. Big hit! I defy you, dear reader, to find one person (well one who has amounted to anything) who thinks there is anything better than watching a bunch of your friends raising the roof putting on a jazz show at a theatre in your neighbourhood. Go on, I dare …

A little something my friends put on Read More »

So much more than tacos and tequila

A group of lucky Capetonians saw in Mexico’s national day on Friday morning with the country’s ambassador to South Africa, Mauricio Escanero, and most famous chef, Jorge Vallejo, at a late night event hosted by sommelier Xavier Didier at the Collections wine bar in Camps Bay. The nibbles, served at around midnight to a diverse …

So much more than tacos and tequila Read More »

Same old difference in Nairobi

There is nothing like a little trip into Africa to shatter some old stereotypes and confirm a few others. Back in Nairobi last week after an absence of four years I found that things are exactly the same and completely different. I was previously a regular visitor to the Kenyan capital, which can seem like a …

Same old difference in Nairobi Read More »

One of Africa’s best and brightest coming home

Stopping short of slamming the door on a career in politics, Dr Kanayo F. Nwanze, the Nigerian national who is president of the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development, on Thursday made it clear that he would continue to dedicate himself to the service of Africa’s young people when he leaves the Rome-based IFAD in …

One of Africa’s best and brightest coming home Read More »

Fantasy helps us imagine reality

Grahamstown: Karoo Moose keeps the audience enthralled as it tracks back and forth across the line between fantasy and reality, dipping into each and pulling out characters that mostly fall somewhere in between. Somehow in this imagined landscape we begin to get our heads around reality. Set in an impoverished Karoo village, not unlike many …

Fantasy helps us imagine reality Read More »

Unmissable raucous bonanza of a show

Back at the Baxter by popular demand: Alistair Izobell’s Remembering the Lux returns to the Baxter from August 25 to September 17 after its runaway success last year … when we thought: Remembering the Luxurama – a multi-layered, multi-coloured, sweet and oh-so-syrupy show – makes you want to say things like unmissable! raucous! bonanza! and extravaganza! It is …

Unmissable raucous bonanza of a show Read More »

Cape-style treats for the people of Jozi

Things are looking up for our brothers and sisters in Jozi. First, the news that the DA (with a little help from Julius and the Red Berets) will soon be filling those potholes, and now a little something else cultivated in the Cape … and I am not talking about Bubbly, although you might want …

Cape-style treats for the people of Jozi Read More »

Pay Back The Curry! delivers a feast of satire

I was expecting a large helping of slapstick with a dash of spice from Pay Back The Curry!, which opened at the Baxter Theatre on Tuesday, and was delighted to be served a feast of sophisticated satire. The sketches and references were so fresh that it felt like playwright Mike van Graan might be cooking …

Pay Back The Curry! delivers a feast of satire Read More »

If you are looking for trouble …

On a mini-tour of Cape Town polling stations on Wednesday I got the message, without exception, that I had come to the wrong place if I was looking for trouble. Not that I was planning to cause any trouble … I received this message loud and clear – if not always in so many words …

If you are looking for trouble … Read More »

Dancing out of disadvantage

Dance for All (DFA), an Athlone-based non-profit organisation that gives free dance classes in the townships of Gugulethu, Nyanga, Langa, Khayelitsha and Delft and nearby rural areas, is to celebrate its 25th anniversary with a gala show at Artscape Theatre on August 13. The anniversary gala, being hosted in partnership with Artscape, will take the …

Dancing out of disadvantage Read More »

Plot to unseat traditional ruler … of teas

South Africans of a certain vintage will remember threats of “die Rooi Gevaar” (the red danger), which many took to be warnings about a secret plot by communists. On Wednesday another theory started to gain ground as it was confirmed that Rooibos tea was secretly advancing in its plot to overthrow Black Tea as the …

Plot to unseat traditional ruler … of teas Read More »

Drones beam signal to far corners of Earth

People living high up in rocky mountain ranges might think their calm days and meditative nights would be forever free from the temptation to stalk ex lovers or window shop online, but they should be warned: Facebook will soon be beaming signal into your rocky cavern of a lounge via a solar-powered drone circling above. …

Drones beam signal to far corners of Earth Read More »

Simphiwe Dana: Queen of the night

It would have been very difficult to actually upstage Simphiwe Dana on the last night of the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, but if anyone could it would have to be the legendary South African guitarist Themba Mokoena. Even when sitting down Mokoena, who is in his mid-sixties, seemed to struggle to keep his feet on …

Simphiwe Dana: Queen of the night Read More »

Drugs, love, drama … we are all addicts

 Riveting performances in Lara Foot’s new play, The Inconvenience of Wings, which opened at the Baxter Theatre on Thursday night, leave the audience feeling totally exposed in more ways than one. Jennifer Steyn, Mncedisi Shabangu and Andrew Buckland leave it all hanging out, literally and metaphorically, as they explore addiction, co-dependency and fully fledged mental …

Drugs, love, drama … we are all addicts Read More »

The sensational Sillage takes Gold

Sillage won a a Gold Ovation Award at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, the only one given this year.  How I love it when I back a winner: This is what I thought: The lingering scent of derailed destinies At first I wanted the actors in Sillage, at the Princess Alice Hall at the National …

The sensational Sillage takes Gold Read More »

Twisted drama feels like a dose of therapy

At a National Arts Festival packed with psycho drama, the dark little comedy Father, Father Father! felt like a good dose of therapy … if not a dose of good therapy. The award-winning play – created by Roberto Pombo, Joni Barnard and Racheal Neary – conjures up all sorts of weirdness and creepy possibility as …

Twisted drama feels like a dose of therapy Read More »

Crossing from the sane side

The Search for Intelligent Signs of Life in the Universe at the National Arts Festival is amazeballs! And, forthwith, I will be using amazeballs and other words that I have previously avoided because they sounded a bit too loony. After this brief tour of “sanity” with Trudy, our crazy bag-lady guide, I am happy to …

Crossing from the sane side Read More »

A master of illusion … and charm

If he wasn’t so damn cute Stuart Lightbody would be absolutely maddening. The magician is smart, funny and sweet, adorable even, as he works his tricks on the room in his show, Sleepless Dreams, at the National Arts Festival. He is totally charming and relaxed as he pulls one trick after another, running through one …

A master of illusion … and charm Read More »

Absurdity and the essence of life

A combination of caricature, satire, panto and mime, Waterline’s cast of masked characters are incredibly charming and funny as they tackle the absurdity of a life ‘below the water line’ in this cracker of a show at the National Arts Festival. Magnificently expressive and detailed masks, designed by Catherine Jacot-Guillarmod, turn the cast into lovable, …

Absurdity and the essence of life Read More »

A thrilling mix of grace and power

My weekend’s highlight at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown was always going to be Cape Dance Company’s show. And that was before Mthuthuzeli November’s devastatingly gorgeous solo. I had had a taste of the CDC show during a short run at Artscape in Cape Town earlier in the year. I knew what I was …

A thrilling mix of grace and power Read More »

Expect another steaming day

After a fierce and fiery start to the National Arts Festival on Thursday, expect another steaming day. A couple of brassy birds (Ladies of Midnight Blue) warmed things up on opening day on Thursday and a fiery one (The Firebird) turned the heat right up. By the time I got to Saints bistro for some …

Expect another steaming day Read More »

As irresistible as it sounds

Ladies of Midnight Blue starts out gently, playfully. Two women drumming. It is rhythmic and somehow hypnotic, you follow them down the path. The beat speeds up faster and faster, two people with so many hands on the drums. You are in a trance, you would follow them anywhere. Next thing you know it is …

As irresistible as it sounds Read More »

Grahamstown: Curtain’s up!

A short-ish drive (130km) from Port Elizabeth airport to Grahamstown is just perfect to re-calibrate heart and mind, aka get one in the mood, for the National Arts Festival, which opens on Thursday and runs until July 10. The road to Grahamstown from the airport that most locals, students, actors, producers and a selection of …

Grahamstown: Curtain’s up! Read More »

Value of social grants outstrips cost

Flying in the face of criticism that social grants spark dependency, comprehensive studies in Zambia have shown that the benefits of cash transfers to poor families outweigh the cost. The research, commissioned by the United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (Unicef) and carried out by the American Institutes for Research (AIR), found that social grants for …

Value of social grants outstrips cost Read More »

Zambia, a reason to be thankful

By Siphelele Dludla “Zikomo”, the local way of saying thank you in Lusaka, always evokes a smile when said by a foreigner, Zambians rightfully laying claim to the title – Africa’s Most Patriotic Nation. The colours of the national flag are in evidence everywhere. From taxis and buses to public dustbins and even curtains in homes, …

Zambia, a reason to be thankful Read More »

Catch The Firebird on its way to LA

Janni Younge’s production of The Firebird will open in Cape Town and pop in at Grahamstown before turning the tables on that big, brassy exporter of showbiz, LA, with a run at the Hollywood Bowl, where the production will be accompanied by the Los Angeles Philharmonic. As if there was not already magic enough in …

Catch The Firebird on its way to LA Read More »

Journey through another world

Review: A Thousand Shepherds by Cape Dance Company at Artscape Theatre, Cape Town A Thousand Shepherds takes your breath away as it screams out to all your senses, most loudly to the sixth one. Inspired by the concept of pilgrimage, the African première of Spanish-UK choreographer José Agudo’s acclaimed work skillfully takes the audience on a spiritual …

Journey through another world Read More »

Shining a light on Africa’s utilities sector

Anyone who witnessed Kandeh Yumkella’s inspiring keynote speech at the opening of the annual African Utility Week won’t be surprised to hear that the Sierra Leonean who is the UN’s first special representative for the Sustainable Energy for All Initiative (SE4All) leaves the event, which closes on Thursday, with a Lifetime Achievement Award. In his …

Shining a light on Africa’s utilities sector Read More »

Transforming the African musical landscape

In a stroke of creative mastery, a media company that is set to transform the music scene in Africa has helped a diverse group of African musicians create a hauntingly beautiful piece of music without ever meeting one another. The nine artists, who were all carefully selected by the media company Bozza out of more …

Transforming the African musical landscape Read More »

WEF Africa: it’s a wrap

Ramaphosa hails ‘fruitful’ WEF mission Kigali – South African deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, speaking at a press briefing held to conclude South Africa’s business at the World Economic Forum Africa meetings in Kigali on Friday, congratulated Rwanda on the “incredible strides” the country had taken. Ramaphosa, flanked by Jeff Radebe, minister in the presidency, and …

WEF Africa: it’s a wrap Read More »

Only a matter of time before Africa takes the lead

Any excuse to use a pic of Madiba, but there is more to this … Jean-Philbert Nsengimana, Rwanda’s minister for youth and information communication technology, said on Thursday that it was just a matter of time before Africa lifted its ambitions above catching up with the rest of the world and start leading. Talking to …

Only a matter of time before Africa takes the lead Read More »

From the snowy peaks of Davos to the green hills of Kigali

It seems impossible not to feel the weight of history in Rwanda, the land of a thousand hills. Terrible things happen. The world keeps turning. People recover. I know but still I kept thinking, Really?! and WTF?! Kigali is a beautiful place nestled between hills. It is safe to drink water from the tap and to walk …

From the snowy peaks of Davos to the green hills of Kigali Read More »

The bohemians of District Six

Another re-imagining of a classic opera? Hmm, I am not sure. “La Bohème with a South African twist”: Giacomo Puccini’s classic set in District Six … okay, I will be there … I am a gambling woman after all, and hope is always the last thing to go. I am not ashamed to say that …

The bohemians of District Six Read More »

The Woman Who Would Be King

 The Woman Who Would Be King (what an irresistible title!) gives a magical peek into an unequal and wildly decadent world, starting with a fantastical creation story and ending with a seemingly hopeless battle for freedom from the tyranny of sexism and inequality. Sound familiar? But this is Ancient Egypt, a mysterious place far far from …

The Woman Who Would Be King Read More »

Cast of superstars shine at Naledi Theatre Awards

 There were lots of gasps, some sighs, plenty of laughter and even a few tears at Tuesday night’s dazzling Naledi Theatre Awards ceremony at Gold Reef City in Johannesburg. A fabulous cast of South Africa’s most colourful characters kept the audience entertained throughout a glittering evening that also paid tribute to more than a few …

Cast of superstars shine at Naledi Theatre Awards Read More »

Boom time in SA’s boom town

Looking at the Cape Town Central City Improvement District’s (CCID) latest state of the central city report you would be forgiven for thinking 2016 was the middle of a boom time. More than R8 billion worth of developments are under construction or in the planning phase in the 1,6 square kilometres that make up Cape …

Boom time in SA’s boom town Read More »

Township for beginners

As if black South Africans didn’t have enough to contend with already with township eating houses being over-run by people from the suburbs and every backpacker from Europe … things could soon get a lot worse when Gold Brands opens a branch of Chesanyama in the U.S. One might expect that traditions and languages will be …

Township for beginners Read More »

JZ: Not one of the good guys

I can’t help wondering why we don’t look at this Zuma-Nkandla thing through an ordinary lens. Whether the president’s behaviour was inconsistent with the Constitution or not is one thing; whether it amounts to greed and dishonesty is another. Does it make him unfit for a seat at your dinner table? Hell yes! Does it …

JZ: Not one of the good guys Read More »

Mafikizolo magic

  Mafikizolo at Kippies, Cape Town International Jazz Festival, Saturday 2 April You can see the influence of FreshlyGround and even a little bit of Mango Groove on the journey, but the destination is pure, perfect Mafikizolo. Their unique sound, a very South African mix of funky township jive and jazz overlaid with classic African …

Mafikizolo magic Read More »

Killing it at the Jazz Fest

  The Elsies River High School band absolutely killed it on Saturday evening at the the 17th annual Cape Town International Jazz Festival. When I say absolutely killed it I don’t mean that in a traditional Cape Flats kind of way. I mean they were sensational! And these youngsters from the toughest of neighbourhoods, where gangsterism is …

Killing it at the Jazz Fest Read More »

SA fastfoodies land another ‘famous’ catch

Gold Brands, owner of brands including Chesanyama and Blacksteer, is set to bring Harry Ramsden’s “world famous fish and chips” to South Africa, it was announced on Friday. A statement warned Gold Brands shareholders, however, that the agreement could still encounter troubles on the high seas and was still subject to conditions. But what a …

SA fastfoodies land another ‘famous’ catch Read More »

There’s gold in every drop

Klipdrift Premium has been named 2016’s World’s Best Brandy at the World Brandy Awards. Devotees of that South African fireside favourite ‘Klippies and coke’ might not recognise the World Brandy Awards panel’s description of Klipdrift Premium’s “aromas of milk chocolate, sponge cake and caramel”, “gentle woodiness” and “a sweet, fruity finish”, but most will agree …

There’s gold in every drop Read More »

Fleur du Caps honour the virgin and the vintage in SA theatre

The great and the good of South African theatre gathered at the Baxter Theatre in Cape Town on Sunday evening for the 51st annual Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards, which celebrated the young and the old, the legendary and the avant garde of South African theatre. At a gala event that honoured Dr John Kani …

Fleur du Caps honour the virgin and the vintage in SA theatre Read More »

Some ramblings on the SA Budget 2016

More bang than you might think … At first glance, February 24’s 2016 Budget speech by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan lacked the sort of radical or dramatic shifts that make for hot headlines and sexy soundbites, but a closer inspection of Gordhan’s deft balancing act revealed some almost bold steps among the fancy footwork. When an …

Some ramblings on the SA Budget 2016 Read More »

PowerTurtle hatches a plan to power school

 An innovative, mini-power station, the PowerTurtle, will be launched at a primary school in an informal settlement in Gauteng on March 2, possibly heralding the start of a revolution in bringing power to schools that are off the grid. The power station in a container will officially be launched at Pheasant Folly Primary School in …

PowerTurtle hatches a plan to power school Read More »

Mafikizolo to melt the snow in Davos

South Africa’s Mafikizolo will be melting the snow in the Swiss town of Davos on Saturday night when they appear at the closing ceremony of the 2016 World Economic Forum. The South African duo, Theo Kgosinkwe and Nhlanhla Nciza, were asked to perform in Davos after their sizzling performance at the WEF Africa meeting in Cape Town …

Mafikizolo to melt the snow in Davos Read More »

Curries work it for India at WEF

One normally has to travel to India (or maybe to London) to eat the best of a certain style of Indian food. From the centre of the World Economic Forum’s meetings in Davos, one must just negotiate a few (seriously perilous) pavements to get to the Make in India cafe for some super delicious Indian …

Curries work it for India at WEF Read More »

Non-conforming veggies

The Rockefeller Foundation is handing out pickled vegetables with cream cheese to hungry delegates and  malnourished journalists at the World Economic Forum in Davos. The vegetables used do not meet industry standards in terms of shape or size and would normally be thrown away. A delicious, nutritious snack that would normally end up in the …

Non-conforming veggies Read More »

V&A: the jewel in CT’s crown

The final numbers are not in yet, but it certainly looks like a bumper festive season for Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront, with record trade figures likely to add to confidence generated by an announcement about a new mixed-use R700m Canal District. The company announced on December 8 that the development of the R700 million first …

V&A: the jewel in CT’s crown Read More »

The big story of 2015 is the many small ones

Looking back over 2015, a few very big stories loom large (SAB-AB Inbev merger, Volkswagen emissions scandal, MTN Nigeria fine, to mention just a few). When you look a bit closer, you will see that the big story, especially in Africa, is the many, many smaller stories, frequently focused on innovation and entrepreneurship. As we …

The big story of 2015 is the many small ones Read More »

2015: A year of butterflies and earthquakes

From today’s viewpoint, 2015 looks like a year of global connectedness (t least in the world of business and finance … ie work), and not all of it of the heart-warming kind. Most of us have heard how a butterfly flapping its wings in one part of the world can cause an earthquake in another. …

2015: A year of butterflies and earthquakes Read More »

The year SA wines earned a place on all the top tables

Let’s all raise a glass to 2015, a breakthrough year for South African wines around the world. If you are picturing millions of customers in the new world quaffing litres of the cheap and cheerful stuff think again. Not only is South Africa taking an increasing slice of expanding markets but the country is securing …

The year SA wines earned a place on all the top tables Read More »

Secret Santas and second children (Sigh)

Many people getting together at Christmas are reducing stress and expense by going the ‘Secret Santa’ route, where everyone buys one gift, either for a person chosen randomly for them or a one-size-fits-all type gift (according to the second-born of the Cassidy clan). It is not as untraditional as it may sound and, played properly, can include …

Secret Santas and second children (Sigh) Read More »

A raucously familiar Unfair Lady

 Unfair Lady at Alexander Bar, Cape Town, until Saturday December 12 This stunning little number from Pop Art theatre in Joburg’s Maboneng district trawls the very fertile grounds of women’s magazines to create a riotous show that had me wincing and laughing hysterically from the Ed’s Letter to the Last Word. Hayleigh Evans and Rachael Neary …

A raucously familiar Unfair Lady Read More »

Nene gets the knife in the night

  President Jacob Zuma’s decision in the night to replace Nhlanhla Nene as Minister of Finance with a relative unknown was met with shock on Thursday morning in the South African business community, still reeling from the country’s credit being downgraded to just one step above junk less than a week ago. The rand went …

Nene gets the knife in the night Read More »

The cool, convenience of Uber rolls into PE

After much speculation about which African city would be next, Uber, the smartphone app that connects passengers with taxis, has said it will start testing its technology in Port Elizabeth on Thursday. Port Elizabeth is the ninth city in Africa to launch after Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, Pretoria, Lagos, Cairo, Nairobi and Casablanca – a …

The cool, convenience of Uber rolls into PE Read More »

A crown of feathers

Looking for the perfect Christmas gift for that special someone who seems to have everything their heart could desire …  Through a series of photographs and short essays Alexia Beckerling takes the reader on a private, magical soul-searching journey to wholeness. She documents a life in constant motion. Now she is in Montana, now she …

A crown of feathers Read More »

A creative revolution

When a Cape Town-based architecture and interior design firm asked their staff to work after-hours pitching against each other to do a comparatively small renovation on a little house in an informal settlement on a tight budget, one might have expected a lacklustre response. Who would have thought that a few weeks later, a grandmother …

A creative revolution Read More »

Sexy, cheap, useful

Visitors to Africa.com at the CTICC in Cape Town this week hoping to do some Christmas shopping might have been disappointed. Unless they were shopping for next Christmas, with many of the gadgets being futuristic in more ways than one. Lots of the products being showcased at the event from November 16-19 are yet to …

Sexy, cheap, useful Read More »

A chic and shiny future

The future is in your hands, says Capo Cassidy, just be careful of those fingerprints NOVEMBER 2015: Capetonians are getting a peek into the future at Africa.com at the CTICC from November 17-19, and it is all chic and shiny … except for those little fingerprints, which seem to be a recurring hazard when life is …

A chic and shiny future Read More »

Paul is coming to SA!

South Africans are in for a sticky, sweet, frothy caffeine-laden treat when Paul, the family-owned French chain of bakery-cafés, sets out its stall in the country, thanks to a licensing deal with Famous Brands announced on Tuesday. Those who thought the arrival of Starbucks was something to be celebrated had better fasten their seatbelts. Established …

Paul is coming to SA! Read More »

Legends pass the baton

There was a real sense of a baton being passed when the Arts and Culture Trust (ACT) announced the 2015 winners of the ACT Lifetime Achievement Awards and ImpACT Awards for young professionals at Sun International’s Maslow Hotel in Sandton this week. The room was filled with legendary figures, the likes of Caiphus Semenya (Lifetime …

Legends pass the baton Read More »

Young Africa works it

… in so many ways Ask today’s young Africans what they plan to do for a living when they grow up and the answer is not that likely to be as simple as lawyer, doctor, or architect. They can’t afford to put all their eggs in one basket as, say, a chicken farmer or a …

Young Africa works it Read More »

Gypsy uncuffed

Skywise Airlines’ co-chief executive says their air travel pass allowing unlimited travel between Johannesburg and Cape Town for a set monthly fee was such a success in its first month that the airline plans to make it part of their core business and expand it, possibly even into something like a Eurorail pass. Ooh, says …

Gypsy uncuffed Read More »

Winos 1; Foodies 0

South African Airways announced this week that it had made a “proudly South African commitment to promote locally made wine,” which apparently pairs very well with all sorts of cuisines, including German. Until recently, South Africa’s national flag carrier had been offering sparkling wine from a province in the north east of France to business …

Winos 1; Foodies 0 Read More »

Practical, delicious … why stop there?

The Market on the Edge at the Cape Town stadium on August 28 and 29 showcases many tech-based innovations – robots and gadgets, apps and ideas to protect IP – as well as providing a platform for what seemed like the odd snake-oil salesman and even someone claiming to have created a time machine. In …

Practical, delicious … why stop there? Read More »

Hearts broken, sides split

A true story about life under apartheid that has the audience laughing out loud, hearty full-throated laughter? Really? You couldn’t make it up. You certainly wouldn’t make it up. And neither did John Kani and his co-authors, Athol Fugard and Winston Ntshona. Instead they pulled a narrative thread expertly through various periods and characters in …

Hearts broken, sides split Read More »

The night the set stole the show

I managed to secure some of the last seats in the house for West Side Story at the Artscape Opera House on Saturday August 8. The balcony was all that was left. I was only a little disappointed because a seat upstairs gives such a great view of the group pieces, in this case two gangs …

The night the set stole the show Read More »

‘Old’ play sets new course

Born in the RSA is a play about apartheid, writes Siobhan Cassidy, but it is not in black and white. It is in full, fabulous multi-colour. Praise the Lord! One can tire of their particular racial hairshirt, whatever that may be, even if it is so much less hairy than everyone else’s. This revival of …

‘Old’ play sets new course Read More »

G’town festival

Kill for a ticket? This reviewer just might The poster says Sold Out. People in the know are saying: Kill For a Ticket. Your mood is black enough (thanks to all the post-apartheid theatre you have seen post apartheid) to be happy to kill for a ticket but you can’t work out who to kill. …

G’town festival Read More »

Fashion, fillies and finance

DURBAN, July 4 – The air around Durban was crackling with excitement on Saturday morning. It felt like all of Johannesburg and at least half of Cape Town had descended on the deliciously balmy but kind of sleepy town for the Vodacom Durban July, “Africa’s greatest horse race”. Fashionistas, fillies and financiers were under equal …

Fashion, fillies and finance Read More »

A smokin’ love affair

“It has to be Ardbeg!” The (familiar) accent was reassuring, and the confidence disarming as Smokin’ Josh Smit elbowed the duty free sales guy aside and stepped in to help me choose a whiskey. He had listened to my description and had no doubt as to what I was after. So Ardbeg it was … …

A smokin’ love affair Read More »

It’s own kinda cool: Durban

Cape Town’s little sister and Jozi’s country cousin, Durban has frequently punched way above it weight on the nightclubbing scene. Remember Zodiac and Ronnies? How about the sensational yet totally unpretentious 330? What the Indian Ocean port city lacks in attitude-soaked Big City Cool it makes up for in laid-back charm and spicy, richly textured …

It’s own kinda cool: Durban Read More »

Not your average gin-joint!

Never before has taking medicine seemed so sweet. Gin, I am told, was originally made by monks as a treatment for gout. Tonic was added later in the fight against malaria. In a recent development, continuing the elevation of G and T from thirst quenching entertainment to life-enhancing elixir, it has been infused with the …

Not your average gin-joint! Read More »

While I was away I: Jozi

While I was away, Johannesburg has turned its back on its old emotional insecurity and obsession with guns, gangs and guards and blossomed into a hip, arty, fashionable party town. From Parktown all the way Downtown, the city exudes that old familiar confidence, cockiness even. Now there is hope too. You can see it on …

While I was away I: Jozi Read More »

A tango on the tip of the tongue

Notes from a delicious year spent pairing Peruvian food with South African wine March 11 2015, Ormonde: Darlings of food and wine We had a gorgeous tasting with Hennie Huskisson, the winemaker from Ormonde in Darling, last night. He introduced us to some delicious wines and taught us his formula for judging grapes fresh from …

A tango on the tip of the tongue Read More »

A beauty, rain or shine

Even on a cold, rainy day the CitySightseeing (www.CitySightseeing.co.za) tour is a really fun and interesting day out in ‘Escape Town’. You might not be able to see the mountain but, hey, you know it is there. A visit to national treasure Groot Constantia is always fabulous and fortifying. The grounds and buildings are somehow …

A beauty, rain or shine Read More »

National treasure

Feeling patriotic? Reach for a glass of Constantia. As if you need another reason on a cold and wintry Cape evening … or a sweltering summer’s afternoon, for that matter. Seriously, though, this is the winemaker that belongs to the nation. I would like to shout it from the rooftops: Groot Constantia is a non-profit …

National treasure Read More »

Long Street: hold on to your hats

Having visitors from out of town, we dusted off our pith helmets and went down to Mama Africa in Long Street. We were lucky to get the last table at this perennially busy tourist ‘trap’.  No false promises here. The atmosphere of excited people chattering in various languages to the sounds of clanging, banging, blowing …

Long Street: hold on to your hats Read More »

Day tripping: Kalk Bay

Some people insist that Kalk Bay is part of Cape Town; for me it is clearly a day trip from the Mother City. That says less about its distance from CT than about the feeling that one is miles away from it all when in this quaint seaside village … on holidaaaay even! Maybe a …

Day tripping: Kalk Bay Read More »

Come on down to the lab …

Never mind the Rocky Horror Picture Show’s crazy cult-feeder of a storyline (Frank-N-furter, eccentric transvestite, cooks up perfect man in lab) I have a crazier one for you: Matthew Wild, director, has stewed up the whole cast for this show at Cape Town’s Fugard Theatre. Art imitates art… Frank-N-furter (Brendan van Rhyn) is just too …

Come on down to the lab … Read More »

Tonight’s fun and games

After a super fab Thursday night at Keenwa, a bum in every seat (I kid you not), the Pisco bar is expecting a crowd of cool young theatre luvvies to watch Jireh’s debut show. Impeccable sources assure me that there is still room and a sensational cocktail or two for stragglers from office drinks … …

Tonight’s fun and games Read More »

Get rid of those hang-ups

Have you got too many hang-ups? Here’s a chance to clear out some of yours and help Capetonians without a single one. The second pop-up clothing store for the poor is on today, January 30 2014, on the outside wall of the Cape Castle, corner Sir Lowry Road & Darling Street, from 6:30am – 7:00pm. …

Get rid of those hang-ups Read More »

Ok, I am in! Where do I sign up?

We have the power! Amandla ngawethu! We know it from those heady days in the early 90s when the idea of Mandela’s release from prison was catapulted from protest songs and dreams and into reality. We remember it crackling and fizzing like live electric wires along the queues for the election in 1994. We also …

Ok, I am in! Where do I sign up? Read More »

Back to the future

Lisa Malcomess takes a peek into the future in her bid to catch up on the past I haven’t been to the Michaelis Graduate Exhibition for several years but, with Cape Town becoming World Design Capital 2014  in a few weeks time, I have thrown myself back into the art world in an effort to …

Back to the future Read More »

Free tickets sold out!

Today we are extra excited as we clutch our tickets for the Mandela commemorative concert at Cape Town’s gorgeous stadium. The tickets were free and include a free ride into town (on Golden Arrow or MyCiti buses or the train) but Computicket did run out. We will gather for a drink and a tapas or …

Free tickets sold out! Read More »

Tata is dead: we must grow up

In his death, as in his life, it seems hardly a soul was left untouched. The days after Nelson Mandela’s passing have been filled with sadness and thankfulness. Most of us felt so blessed to have lived in his time, to have this giant of a man live amongst us. But Tata is gone; we …

Tata is dead: we must grow up Read More »

Sparkling, even without the bubbly

Lisa Malcomess (aka the Lady in the Purple Hat) sips on a glass of Veuve and imagines she is choosing a Christmas gift at the opening of Everard Read’s Summer of Sculpture exhibition at the Mount Nelson Hotel Sipping Veuve Clicquot and nibbling on delicious snacks while perusing Everard Read’s new Summer of Sculpture exhibition …

Sparkling, even without the bubbly Read More »

Nik Rabinowitz: the Main Act

It is not only Nik Rabinowitz’s two small children nipping at his heels. There is a pack of hungry young wolves chasing him from behind. Cape Town comedy lovers are spoiled for choice. Memories of Loyiso Gola’s fab performance were still fresh in our minds when we joined Nik for a manic, fun-filled ride while …

Nik Rabinowitz: the Main Act Read More »

Christmas in Haven

The lunch for 100 people at the Haven in Greenpoint on Christmas Day will possibly be more orderly than the affair I am attending in KwaZuluNatal (they are quite excitable in KZN, you got to love those Zulus). Jerry from the Haven tells Call Off The Search that their lunch is no free-for-all (with a …

Christmas in Haven Read More »

Purple reigns

Call Off The Search’s new guest columnist Lisa Malcomess (aka the Lady in the Purple Hat) was tickled pink (and reduced to an adoring, child-like fan) in the presence of Mary Sibande at the opening of her new exhibition, The Purple shall Govern (coincidence? We think not!), in Cape Town. ‘One glance across the packed …

Purple reigns Read More »

A scarlet harlot at the ballet

The opening dance in Cadence at Artscape made me cringe suddenly and unexpectedly. I wanted to shout: I have betrayed you! I am a scarlet woman! My second viewing of Joshua Beamish’s KeepCover brought memories of my first viewing flooding back. How hard I had fallen that day! My heart fluttered and my breathing quickened. …

A scarlet harlot at the ballet Read More »

Ballet, like water for chocolate…

Ballet, like water for chocolate, is not supposed to boil. It is supposed to simmer, gently and lyrically, to soothe and reassure. Really? Well … maybe in another country or in another, more genteel, era. Not in South Africa in 2013, and certainly not in a steamy nightclub “somewhere in Spain”, where Christopher L. Huggins …

Ballet, like water for chocolate… Read More »

Feasting in the Mother City

Aaah Cape Town in the springtime … restaurants always seem to be at the forefront of the Mother City’s annual revival and reinvention. For the coolest of cool venues for after-work drinks and light eats, La Parada has come to town! We were all puffed up and proud when we ‘discovered’ La Parada’s little sister …

Feasting in the Mother City Read More »

It was a starry, starry night

My first thought was that the setting would be the star of the evening. Then I saw Venus, shining brightly above and providing a magical layer to the lighting. There was a lot for the Cape Dance Company dancers to compete with at Oude Libertas Amphitheatre on a beautiful Stellenbosch evening. But we were quickly …

It was a starry, starry night Read More »

Views on rooms

There is nothing like staying in different hotels a few nights in a row to sort the wheat from the chaff … I am going to start, not at the beginning, but from the top. Hog Hollow  The Crags near Plettenberg Bay From slick check-in (a glass of bubbly and a clipboard with a form …

Views on rooms Read More »

Superfab and superfly

Super fab, super fine and superfly, Loyiso Gola made us all laugh heartily at ourselves tonight … with […insert drum roll here please…] absolutely no guilt! Avoiding the old topics – the PWs, the koeksusters, the FWs and the mothers-in-law – was clearly no effort for him. It was more than his perfect Model-C accent …

Superfab and superfly Read More »

Corporeal calli­graphy

Joshua Beamish is not just another in a long line of experts from ‘the north’. He is not here to force feed ideas and impose templates. The Canadian-born, New York-based choreographer has come to put his magic into the pot with ours, and to make something new that we can all call our own. The …

Corporeal calli­graphy Read More »

Just for a larf…

Miffed that you missed the tiny private viewing of Between (written by and starring Oskar Brown) in Hout Bay? Pissed that you couldn’t get to Edinburgh to see it at the festival? Oskar Brown in Bring-a-thing: Oskar Brown’s stand-up storytelling. This is what you missed… Edinburgh: A feast of a fest Boys, girls, straights, gays …

Just for a larf… Read More »

Carpe diem! Carpe Langa!

“This is how I want to feel, walking down my street.” Photo: Rory Williams On October 12 Open Streets is closing Rubusana Street in Langa to motorised traffic to make way for Cape Town’s art-loving A-List as the Maboneng Township Arts Experience opens its permanent arts route in the Langa Quarter. If you are looking for an …

Carpe diem! Carpe Langa! Read More »

Poetry in motion

It feels kinda silly to say it but there is SO much to look forward to in Cape Town right now. I say silly because it is not like there wasn’t so much to look forward to yesterday; it is not as if I haven’t already been driven to use up my limited vocabulary’s superlatives. …

Poetry in motion Read More »

Xhosa IS the X Factor!

(If this link doesn’t work search youtube for Jeanette Akua)

Insider outsider

Some of us hit the ground running; others don’t. There are those who get it immediately. They skip off on a joyous journey, getting totally lost as they explore layers and layers of meaning. Others – like the poor and the unemployed in wealthy societies – are left outside …  surrounded by questions, they writhe …

Insider outsider Read More »

Banks at Baxter

You may usually feel kinda smug that you are not upstairs in what is sometimes known as the cheap seats (“the waiting” room – as Mark Banks calls it), but you want to be careful about sitting in the front row with that particular smugness displayed. Mark Banks is gonna stretch out a big, playful …

Banks at Baxter Read More »

Sadako winner over the moon

Ferial Essa has more than one reason to welcome the sighting of the new moon that will mark the end of Ramadan. She will be taking a friend to see Sadako, the “exquisite” Bunraku puppet show at the Baxter. The UCT graduate’s name was drawn out of a hat and the 22-year-old who “loves food …

Sadako winner over the moon Read More »

Umntu Ngumntu Ngabantu!

Fresh from 67 minutes in the knitting circle (a bunch of shamelessly competitive backstabbers) we considered the great conundrum, Who won? What was the big success of 67 minutes at 9Needs? We mulled this question as we cleaned up the kitchen, which Michelle had Jackson Pollocked with pancake batter (the recipe for which will soon …

Umntu Ngumntu Ngabantu! Read More »

Mandela Day!

Nice ‘pot’ huh? Come down to 9Needs Studio today at lunchtime and the potter Carlos Orte, aka Curley the Spanish guy, will show you how to make a ‘pot’ that would make Picasso proud. Or you could learn a little Xhosa or even some Spanish, take a painting class, be a nude model for a …

Mandela Day! Read More »

Rolling with Rolihlahla

  If we were a shopping centre I think we would have our first anchor tenant! Meridian Nolithemba Berndt – traditional healer, herbalist and ritual facilitator – will be ours … even if only for 67 minutes (from 1.30pm) at 9Needs studio in Woodstock on Madiba Day, Thursday July 18. Meridian will be giving an …

Rolling with Rolihlahla Read More »

Blankets drive catches fire after dodging bullet

Call Off The Search’s blankets for cupcakes drive is back on track after dodging a bullet earlier in the week. A spokeswoman for the site, who declined to be named, said an international call for assistance combined with a fall in the rand had helped get the drive to spread a little warmth and cheer …

Blankets drive catches fire after dodging bullet Read More »

9 Needs

A beginning without an ending My needs: Beginnings, bread, wine, cheese, endings. When I went down to 9 Needs Studio’s first Indie Movie Night it was a beginning, there was wine and something like bread and cheese, but there was no ending. I can’t help thinking that this beginning without an ending was part of the …

9 Needs Read More »

Scroll to Top