Afrikaans singing sensation Willem Botha stars in “the biggest Afrikaans musical ever” as Reik Na Die Sterre premiered last week. In the production, Willem stars as Stefan, an athetic teenager who has always wondered the meaning of true love before meeting the girl of his dreams – Jana. As luck would have it, however, he is forced to leave for the army and despite the many forces that try to come between them, they manage to find their ever after.
Yup! It pretty much follows the Afrikaans romcom recipe to a T. The production is rather predictable, but it’s what the audiences love and they will manage to impress about 80% of their audience. Willem is so awesome in the play. I’ve only seen him sing but damn, he can command a stage.
Vocally, the actors and actresses in the production are fantastic. They really are. Sure, they sing super cheesy songs and act as if they’re in a teenage dream but they do it so effortlessly. Also, as an English speaking guy, I found myself still following the story even though it was majorly in Afrikaans. The staging and use of the stage was also great despite not having the budget something at Monte’s Teatro would.
The show’s biggest problem on the opening night? The sound. I stopped counting how many times mics were off when they should have been on and vice versa. It’s okay if it happens here and there but this was just ridiculous. That and the fact that some of the scenes are SO cheesy that you literally cringe in your seat.
That being said, I really enjoyed the production. It’s for the young and the young at heart and I would definitely recommend that you head over to Computicket now and book! The show runs at the SA State Theatre in Pretoria until August 3rd.
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