Karen Zoid on DVD - Karen Zoid: In die Staatsteater

2006-03-29 19:15

In die Staatsteater

Meet Karen and entourage, living the Rock 'n Roll life, but not too convincingly, as she stages an arrival with bodyguards, band and bubbly in a white stretch limousine. Not that she's not a real rock star (she's that) but the Janis Joplin act doesn't quite match the environment. That was part of the point of the Kyknet series of course - to reclaim the old grey Apartheid-era Pretoria Staatsteater building - but the crowds of tens (not thousands) of fans waiting at the door don't really justify the pizzaz. You're left wondering if this is an attempt at warm self mockery, or a big mistake.

The Show
An impressive and almost flawless live vocal performance from the vibrato-free Zoid. Her grungy, rich voice and her ability to look plumply shaggable in an unflattering black pinafore style dress show that it's not vital stats that matter most, but talent. Indian cushions and rugs on the front of the stage attempt to create a hippie atmosphere. This attempt fails. Not Zoid's warmth, nor the theatre full of fans can quite overcome the cold concrete of the Pretoria Staatsteater, and all the ghosts it surely holds. Trapped in their seats, the audience glumly try to get into the vibe, and mostly fail. They barely even respond to Karen's sweetly counter cultural quips - either because they don't agree with her jokes, or because they don't get them. Despite a few genuinely moving moments, it takes the hit track "Afrikaaners is plesierig" to drag everyone to their feet cheering and adoring briefly.

Basically just another way of navigating to the individual performances of songs without the chit chat. Useful but wouldn't lyrics or background info have been more of a real DVD "extra"?

Bonus Video - "Afrikaaners is plesierig"
You've probably seen this cool video on TV. A making of insert, or even just a directorial credit, would have been worthwhile!

Die Reeks
This menu item just features text about the Kyknet TV series - a lame attempt to sell the rest of the DVDs - with an annoying repetitive rock phrase in the background. Clips from other performances, interviews with stars, a promo... Anything would have been more entertaining than this last minute patch job.

There's an unfortunate tendency to pad DVD menus and this is no exception. The menu provides about three different ways to navigate to the same things, and the genuine extras are disappointing. All in all, there isn't anything much more interesting than what you'd get from a live CD. The music is the best bit - and it's great despite a rather limp backing band. So if you own the DVD, turn your TV screen off for maximum viewing pleasure.

- Jean Barker

Karen Zoid and her band, live in die Pretoria Staatsteater, make a mixed success of the Kyknet-organised occasion.

LittleSeed 2004/08/16 4:54 PM
Karen Rocks Superb !! In die Staatsteater Meet Karen and entourage, living the Rock 'n Roll life,
lindi 2004/08/20 8:11 PM
Kief!!! I enjoy her live preformence, she is happy go lucky for sure
Juanita Steenkamp 2005/09/07 4:43 PM
Karen Zoid: In die Staatsteater Poor NO
WALTER NICHOLSON 2005/10/30 2:32 PM
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