Inaugural Annual Independent Theatre Makers Awards Launched in Style

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“I’m scared, I’m in shock, I’m going to think about it tomorrow. For now, it stills feel like a dream…”

The much-anticipated first annual TX Theatre’s Independent Theatre Makers Awards took place on Saturday, 10 February 2024, at Moses Molelekwa Arts Centre, Tembisa.

The cream of the crop in the world of Theatre came out to play, dressed to the nines. Putting their best fashion foot forward to celebrate a momentous milestone in the South Africa Theatre diaspora – 1st annual independent Theatre Makers Awards.

The glittering awards ceremony boasting cutting edge technology and pyrotechnics, was hosted by media personality Tebogo Manatla Maunatlala and Freddie G. Modise and featured outstanding opening performances by Ramatswi Solly from Soetry_sa. The guest presenters were an array of some of the biggest names in the Theatre space and entertainment. In addition to an array of nominees the red carpet was buzzing with the brightest names in the entertainment industry – Scelo Buthelezi, Matthews Rantsoma, and Mpho Molepo to name but a few.

The coveted Community Theatre Builder of The Year gong went to Mandisi Dr Disi Sindo while the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award went to a Theatre god that is of course – The legendary Lucky “Professor” Kgafela.

Sibusiso Khwinana posthumously clinched the Sibusiso Khwinana Award. Woza Albert took home the Best Production gong.

The BEST DIRECTOR award was awarded to Botshelo Mmutle for Who left the fridge open.

Veteran Actor Hamilton Dlamini won the BEST ACTOR MALE gong for his exceptional performance on Woza Albert.

The BEST ACTOR FEMALE went to Idebeth Ranake – Who Left the Fridge Open while Kutollo Mashifane was bestowed the BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR MALE accolade.

The BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR FEMALE was awarded Zaza Cala – Iminxwa.  Iminxwa also clinched the BEST ENSAMBLE award.

BEST NEW SCRIPT went to My fellow South Africans by Mike Van Graan. BEST ORIGINAL SCRIPT was awarded to Prayers.

The highly contested BEST STUDENT PRODUCTION went to Tembisa’s and TX Theatre’s very own

Kidding by Thabang Chauke while Umnikelo by Luyanda Sidiya won the BEST DANCE PRODUCTION.

The gong for BEST CHOREOGRAPHER went to none other than Luyanda Sidiya. Pula the Musical Cast won the BEST COSTUME DESIGN award.

Karabo Legoabe – for Who Left the Fridge Open took home the BEST SET DESIGN gong. BEST MUSICAL award went to Iminxwa. Selekane Tumelo Mdabuli was awarded with the BEST MUSICAL COMPOSITION award.

BEST OF TEMBISA THEATRE WEEK gong went to Mshovara. Herman Dipolelo Malema – Pienaar the Musical clinched the BEST LEAD IN A MUSICAL accolade.

Last but not least Kim Blanche Adonis – My Fellow South Africans took home the coveted BEST SOLO PERFORMANCE.

In an exclusive interview with SA POSITIVE NEWS CEO and Artistic Director of TX Theatre Mxolisi Masilela was in awe of the Award’s success.

“I’m scared, I’m in shock, I’m going to think about it tomorrow. For now, it still feels like a dream, it’s still an idea in the head. Now that it’s real – it doesn’t feel real. It still feels like I’m still dreaming.”

Red carpet set, venue filled to the brim, everyone understood the assignment. The ladies looked drop dead gorgeous in their colourful and daring outfits. The gentlemen looked dapper as well. What a time to be Tembisan! What a time to be young, black, and gifted.

The TX Theatre also celebrated its 10th anniversary since inception. A significant milestone – touching lives, igniting dreams, and of course causing a ripple effect of inspiration.

A decade of brilliance, enduring magic woven by the TX Theatre. Over the past 10 years the TX Theatre transformed stages into realms of imagination, capturing the essence of humanity through the art of storytelling.

The tireless Actors, dedicated crew, the visionary directors are honoured and celebrated. May the 10 years be a continuation of the journey. More poignant stories told, more breathtaking performances and unwavering passion.

Congratulations are in order. Not only to the winners but to the TX Theatre.

By Sinenzolo Mondi – Nduku