For many, a new South African play is far too often thematically linked to pre-1994 South Africa. Gina Shmukler’s latest offering, The Line, presents something refreshingly new and hard hitting as it questions the events and circumstances around the country’s infamous xenophobic attacks of 2008.
The Line’s presence at The Market Theatre follows on from its overwhelming success at the 2012 WALE Festival. The play stems from Schmukler’s masters research on trauma and theatre making, where she investigated the widespread attacks of 2008 and interviewed many of the victims and perpetrators involved. The play’s content threads the collected stories and testimonies into a fascinating, engaging and provocative work.
The testimonies and assorted characters are performed expertly by actors Gabi Harris and Khutjo Green, who help to create an enthralling, almost documentary-style window into the events of 2008. This investigation not only also succeeds in questioning the circumstances around the attacks; it also tackles many of South Africa's current problems.
The Line runs at The Barney Simon Theatre at The Market till 12 August, with performances from Tuesday to Saturday at 20h15 and on Sunday at 15h15.