MADIE CALITZ : CHAIRPERSON
I am a medical technologist specializing in Microbiology for the last 21 years which, in layman’s terms, means that any part or process of the human body will be sent to me to ascertain whether there are organisms present and whether antibiotics could be used. I was born in Roodepoort but moved to Sasolburg where I grew up as a very shy child. After matric I joined the army then went to study.
My first show was Cinderella the Pantomime under the direction of Quintin van Biljon. I started off in the cast as chorus, but one of the hats I wore was a chef’s hat. During the next shows I played a Wise old woman, a Fairy, a Knife, a Bus Driver with an eclectic range of outfits, a sidekick to the sheriff, Disgust, Director, Dancer in Aladdin, a Zebra and a Spongy dancer. The bug bit and the joy spread to writing and directing my own shows. From my first role as chef there was always one constant in my life on stage, I always had something on my head. I will wear the hat of the Theatre throughout my life with complete joy and passion.
I am the person who makes sure that meetings don’t carry on for too long, that goals are set and met and that everyone stays motivated!
WIN SIMPSON : VICE-CHAIR
I am a retired Professional Nurse who came to George from Grahamstown in February 2000. I joined the George Society of Arts in December 2000 to participate in the Pantomime : Jack & the Beans Talk and became involved in the wardrobe helping with costumes for the show.
I took over the running of the wardrobe room with Pam Mayo in 2004 and managed it for 11 years. I also assisted in the design and moving of the Wardrobe from what is now the props room to the “annex” as it was called back then. I also managed the front office for 3 months between the time that Roz Piejus left and Beatrice Esterhuizen being employed as Theatre Manager.
I am currently Society Secretary for the 3rd time.
CINDI PRINSLOO : TREASURER
I joined the George Society of Arts in June 2018 as Treasurer. As a Certified Technical Financial Accountant registered with both the South African Institute of Tax Practitioners (SAIT) and the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers and Accountants (ICBA). I have been running my own strategic management accounting business for over twelve years in the Garden Route and as a Business Partner for QuickBooks, the global leader in accounting software for small business and a registered Dealer for Integrity Payroll, a payroll solution for small business.
I am the person who ensures that years are added to the Theatre’s lifespan by making sure all the books balance, all the cents get turned and everyone plays by the rules.
ILZE TULLEKEN – COMMITTEE MEMBER
I obtained my drama degree in Stellenbosch (Bdram 2001 -2003) and continued my studies to complete my Honors degree with theatre royalty, Marthinus Basson, as my mentor.
George became my hometown in 2005 and I was a drama and language teacher at York High after which I became principal of a franchised drama academy. Currently I own Duende Drama Studio; my own drama studio which always been a life long dream of mine.
I became part of the Arts Theatre in 2017 and has been on the committee ever since. My heart adores this jewel of a theatre.
ALDO CALITZ – COMMITTEE MEMBER
I am a professional dancer with my own dance studio, where I choreograph dances for the George Arts Theatre plays. I started at the Theatre in 2013 as the Prince in Cinderella, where I was surrounded by a very experienced cast. My love for the Theatre grew since then and I try to be involved in almost every single play or show at the Theatre, either on stage, in the sound box or behind the scenes.
I have a passion for musicals, as I love to act and sing, but my humor (which I inherited) from my mother, makes me love the pantomimes just as much. This is why I am on the committee and this is why I want to keep the Arts Theatre alive.
I am the youngest member of the committee so I’m the one who makes sure that things stay hip and happening.
CAREL MOUTON – COMMITTEE MEMBER
I joined the George Arts Theatre committee in 2018. I have 25 years’ experience in amateur drama theatre as an actor, play writer and director/producer. I qualified as a drama teacher in 2010 from the National Drama College in Johannesburg.
LIANé VAN ZYL – INTERIM THEATRE COORDINATOR
I am an entrepreneur constantly looking for ways to change the world.
I got my first role in Edwina Rapley’s 42nd Street production which changed my life FOREVER! For one I learnt how to tap, I got to be on stage and sing and dance to my heart’s desire. Since then I’ve had many other mentors who pushed me far beyond I ever thought I could do.
The George Arts Theatre is not merely a place where people are entertained, it’s a place where people see beyond your day job and into your heart’s desires. It’s a place where talent is molded and dreams come true. It’s a place of lifelong friendships, buckets of laughter and many tears. It’s a complex chest of memories.
It’s a treasure.
CHANTAL WITTHUHN – WARDROBE MANAGER
June 2018 I started the position as Wardrobe Manager with great enthusiasm. The Wardrobe is like Pandora’s box full of possibilities. As a fashion and image stylist I look forward to showcasing my creative style and edge. Every person and character is an opportunity to transforming lives into works of art.
JOLIEN SAAIMAN – OFFICE ADMINISTRATOR
SEVI BOTHA – SOUND & LIGHTS
The Theatre has an amazing way of growing on a person. I have never thought of ever working in a Theatre but somehow my love for entertainment inevitably played out to this point. The rewarding part of the job is sitting in the sound box, looking down on a crowd that is hooked to the show on stage, knowing that I play a part in their entertainment at that moment, cueing a sound, fading a light at their designated times that the choreographer or director ordered. My favourite shows to do are dance shows, because the choreographers/dance teachers gives me the opportunity to design the lighting for their shows, which is particularly fun for me. I have a background in drawing, the only difference now is that the stage is like a blank canvas for me and the different types of lighting fixtures are my paint brushes, so it gives me a rush when the automation plays out at a show and then hear comments about how awesome the lights were!
I am grateful to Heather Stead and the team at the Theatre because through the skills I learnt there, I had the opportunity of doing lighting at the George Civic Centre for a Ballet Production. It was the biggest show and the most pressure I’ve been under since doing sound and lights and turned into an incredibly rewarding experience as I not only learnt new skills but I also learnt a lot about myself and have gained more confidence in my abilities.
I hope that all of George realises what a treasure they have in this Theatre and the potential that it has for its residents, not only spiritually, but also for the economic good of George and the Garden Route as a whole.
XOLISA MTHELWA – DRAMA INTERN
I am a mentor and coach for upcoming artists helping them achieve their fullest potential. I believe knowledge is power and that you should have access to as much information as possible to take charge of your art career. I am an energetic, ambitious person who has developed a mature and responsible approach to any task that I undertake, or situation that I am prepared with.
I’ve been part of the following Theatre productions: Robin Hood Pantomime, Aladdin the Musical, Khumba on Stage, Cow, Town and Ghost, Monsters, Dream Box and The Book Tree. I’ve worked as the back stage manager as well as backstage hands. I’ve been a director and co-director including The Girl with the Golden Locks, Romeo and Juliet (2016), The Tempest (2016) ,Macbeth (2017), Romeo and Juliet (2018) Othello (2018) and Julius Caser (2018).
I am excellent in working with others to achieve certain objectives in time. I’m passionate about working with people and doing outreach projects to help those who don’t have access to drama and the Arts. My mission is to help them achieve their fullest potential by coaching and providing drama lessons.
JEFFREY VAN NIEKERK – DRAMA INTERN
During Grade 12, a friend and myself started a drama group at school. We wrote small plays and performed them at school assembly, meetings or other school functions.
Our group won a talent show and was introduced to the George Arts Theatre management.
Soon after that I became involved as an intern and it has been a wonderful experience since then being able to learn about the different facets of Theatre and performance.
ROSEMARY PETERSEN : HOUSEKEEPER & WARDROBE ASSISTANT