Shakespeare schools festival at The Fugard Theatre

Pupils from De La Bat School for the deaf and hearing impaired, the Lalela Project and Vista Nova took part in an interactive Shakespeare Schools Festival SA (SSFSA) drama workshop ahead of the upcoming festival at the Fugard Theatre.

The 10th Shakespeare School’s Festival South Africa (SSFSA) kicks off on Tuesday March 3 at The Fugard Theatre.

The 35 Cape Town schools taking part this year will each have to prepare and perform 30-minute abridged versions of the Shakespeare play of their choice.

In the months leading up to the festival, the SSFSA hosts several interactive workshops for pupils and teachers, making resources available to equip participants and ensure the successful staging of their plays.

The SSFSA is an educational programme aimed at improving language and social skills through the performing arts.

SSFSA prides itself on being a fully inclusive event that welcomes all pupils, including those with different abilities and challenges.

In previous festivals the De La Bat School for the deaf (using South African Sign Language) and the Pioneer School for the Visually Impaired delivered renditions of Romeo and Juliet and Macbeth respectively.

Both schools will again be part of the festival this year.

The festival, pioneered by founder Kseniya Filinova-Bruton from Educape, has grown from an event with 20 participants to one that attracts more than 2 000 youth each year across the Western Cape, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape.

SSFSA helps explore pupils’ acting potential in a fun, developmental way, while making their theatre debut on a professional stage in a non-competitive environment. The festival will also be presented in Johannesburg, Durban, George and Makhanda.

The Shakespeare Schools Festival at the Fugard Theatre runs from Tuesday March 3 to Saturday March 14.

Performances start at 7pm and tickets are available through 021 461 4554 and www.thefugard.com