WOOLWORTHS. Written and directed by Juliet Jenkin. With Alice de Beer, Wynand Ferreira, Alicia McCormick, Kaylee McIlroy, Francesco Nassimbeni, Tazmé Pillay and Johann Vermaak. Theatre Arts Admin Collective.


Watching this new Juliet Jenkin piece, Woolworths, at the Theatre Arts Admin Collective, is thrilling. It is a combination of totally unexpected, original and brilliant.

Woolworths: Theatre Arts Admin Collective

As the creator of Woolworths Juliet is a fresh wind, wind breaker, breaker of ground, ground swell, swollen, sweige (no that isn’t a word, I just made it up, and I am allowed to, because of the show I saw last night).

In the fastest 50 minutes a completely bare stage is occupied by seven black and white attired (waitrons definitely spring to mind) members of a mind-bending chorus who spew, sing, chant, whine, shout and chat this bullet point script whose essence is an absurd, yet deeply observed prose poem to the privileged. Seven chorus members take on cars, dogs, colours, plastic, children, rhinos, plastic children, bathrooms, Roger Federer, dreams and nightmares. And they dance, fall, feint, turn, jump and pounce the words and the meaning of the words into an hilarious, wicked, uncomfortable and perfectly observed social commentary. It is dark and magical, embarrassing and outrageous, and it is one of the best shows I have seen this year.

Here the middle of the middle class is exposed and examined, turned on its egocentric head and selfied, but so fast the moment is gone and morphed into another complaint or revelation.

The chorus works like a well-oiled machine and each cog turns and is turned to create a breathless and searingly funny, completely original piece.

If you have seen David Byrne’s True Stories you may have a vague sense of what to expect. Woolworths reminded me of how I felt the first time I saw True Stories.

It’s on for only a couple more days and last night was full, so you should book soon.

What: Woolworths at the Theatre Arts Admin Collective

When: Until 28 August 2018

Book: Here