25 years on a revival of a South African Anti-war classic
Written by Anthony Akerman
Directed by AndrÃ© Odendaal
Costume, sets & lighting by Kosie Smit
Stage manager: Joanna Borton
Cast (In order of appearance)
David Levitt - Glen Biderman-Pam
Trevor Mowbray - Kaz McFadden
Bombardier Kotze - Charles Bouguenon
Paul Marais - Luan Jacobs
Hennie Badenhorst - AndrÃ© LÃ¶tter
Doug Campbell - Dylan Horley
Black Actor - Ndino Ndilula
Somewhere on the Border is like a report from hell. It is an impassioned, horror-struck revolt against the brutalisation of militarism... which is not to say it is not also at times extremely funny, shrewd and even sometimes tender and compassionate ...One of the great strengths of the play is that it avoids presenting its characters simplistically. Humphrey Tyler, Sunday Tribune
When South Africa started exorcising its political past at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, one chapter in our recent history was given short shrift. That was the way young white men had been subjected to compulsory military service for several decades in a defence force that became politicised to a point where it was simply the brutal enforcer of apartheid. Those who supported apartheid were, more often than not, enthusiastic conscripts, but there were many who only served because other options didn't seem available to them. Some of them committed or witnessed atrocities and there is still a generation living among us whose lives - and the lives of their loved ones - have been scarred by (often undiagnosed) post-traumatic stress disorder. While their cause was ignoble, why do none of the names of those fallen appear on the walls in Freedom Park? It could certainly be argued that many of them were unwilling combatants and might justifiably be classified as victims of apartheid. Or is this simply the old story of history being written by the victors?
During the 1970s and 1980s our military incursions into neighbouring states were shrouded in secrecy. Most parents didn't know how to speak to their sons about the military. After two decades of silence, the role of the military during those years has found its way back into public discourse. Many conscripts who went through those harrowing experiences as teenagers are looking back as adults and trying to make sense of it. It's clear that they feel the need to speak about what happened to them. Somewhere on the Border participates in that conversation.