2013 Huisgenoot Skouspel: A phoenix risen from its ashes

2013-10-08 09:33
huisgenoot skouspel
Rihanna's just a week away from performing here in South Africa... Meh. Why not just forget about her and rather go and watch Die Heuwels Fantasties in action. Way much more worth your money and time. Plus, you won't feel violated afterwards.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show has been extended at the Fugard Theatre in Cape Town. Rocky Horror is filled with so much Americanisms... Yeah, but you need to see Nataniël in action. Live.

You’ll be entertained and wet yourself with laughter with his quips and local stories.

Oh. Glee's newest season just premiered in the US and we all know you've been secretly watching that pirated copies. So, why not just fork out a few and see some of South Africa's best hits and memories being jammed into a pulse pumping, electrifying song, not sung by adults who pretend to be teenagers.

In case you are a bit slow, and not catching my drift: Local is just simply lekker.

And the 2013 Huisgenoot Skouspel reminds you of that in every way possible. Nothing can beat music, art and the soul of what South Africa has to offer.

Shunning the non-believers

After reviewing 2012's Skouspel, I went on quite a tirade. I hailed it as a flop and felt very disappointed with the show. Yet, this year I was back and felt amped to be proven wrong. And boy was I given a show of a lifetime.

Ladies and gents: 2013's Huisgenoot Skouspel is like the proverbial phoenix that rose up from the ashes.

Shunning the non-believers and disappointed fans out there, this year’s show put the classical music event of the year back on the map.

To me, it felt like the producers sat down and stripped the show to its core, going back to the basics. Last year, every decision was overthought and bland. This year it was taken to a whole new level.

Stripping down and keeping it simple

The presentation was stripped down and given a new outlook: KISS- Keeping it Simple Stupid. The artists and Nataniël, who was the host of the event, interacted with the crowd in a very natural way.

Nataniël, the it icon of the moment, had a ball on the stage and the crowd couldn't get enough of him.

The songs sung by the artists were either their own compositions or set to the theme of the moment, as in the case of the tribute act for Afrikaans songstress Anneli van Rooyen. In contrast with last year's theme and songs, 2013 brought a revival to an Afrikaans gem that has people flocking from all over South Africa to celebrate that can’t be found anywhere else.

Trapeze artists and gymnasts were brought in to perform alongside the artists this year. In its way it brought the flair of Cirque du Soleil to the concertgoers. Where I was sceptical that the gymnasts and trapeze artists may overshadow the musical acts, the two went on to complement each other in a classy, delightful way.

The various artists, such as the Mzansi Youth Choir, the ATKV 2013 Rieldanser Champions and the Circus School that intertwined their acts with various artists' songs, proved that you can celebrate everything that our artists in South Africa has to offer in one spectacular performance.

In addition, each artist showed why they deserved to be on the stage and owned the spotlight. It was like they themselves were on a different level than last year, and their smiles and energy could be felt across the Super Bowl.

'I have a bone to pick'

I do have a bone to pick…But… (Yes. The "but" was coming.)

There were certain artists who I have a bone to pick with.

While some fan favourites had so little time on stage, certain performers (I am going to refrain from mentioning names… *cough cough* Kurt Darren…) went on to have more air time on stage than necessary.

It also seems that being a gentleman also has lost its meaning.

After completing her performance, Andriëtte Norman fell on stage. During that time, Nicholis Louw came on stage and started performing without helping her up…

Ray Dylan seemed very irritable during the first part of the show, but soon lightened up.

It’s things like these that myself and most other concertgoers picked up on and talked about afterwards.

A tradition, 14 years in the making

While it could have been easily avoided, it drew enough attention away from the music and the show.

Still, I am looking over these mishaps. The show was executed in true Skouspel-fashion.

Well done to the producers of the 2013 Huisgenoot Skouspel - you've injected some serious life into something that means a lot too many people. You banked on all your strengths, matching up all the right artists and giving the audience a night to remember.

Although Afrikaans is Groot proves to be stiff competition for Skouspel (a thought shared by many people I met over the Skouspel weekend), it still has a lot to garner and learn from a tradition that is set 14 years in the making.

While we tend to praise artists, music and cultures outside of South Africa, it is quite easy to forget that inside the borders of our country are some pretty fine gems that are just as talented and awesome as Rihanna (Yeah, I just went there).

Local will always be lekker and the 2013 Huisgenoot Skouspel is the perfect show to remind you of that and the significance that Afrikaans music as well as other local artists hold.

Guess I’ve been turned into a Skouspel fan boy now…

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