Closure of Fugard Theatre threatens survival of District Six Museum
On Tuesday, arts-loving Capetonians learned of the permanent closure of the Fugard Theatre in the old District Six.
"After a year of Covid closure,” reads a statement on the Fugard’s website, “it is with great regret and sadness that I have to confirm that The Fugard Theatre will close permanently with immediate effect.
“We are not persuaded that it will be Covid-safe or financially viable to reopen as a theatre in the foreseeable future.
“The theatre will be handed back to the owner of the freehold of the building – the board of The District Six Museum – as a working theatre and we hope that they will be able to use it for the benefit of the District Six community…”
“The arts industry and the theatre industry are fragile,” said Greg Karvellas, the former Resident Director at the Fugard.
“It's kind of a surreal day for many of us and many of the audience members that came to The Fugard over the years.”
The District Six Museum is independent and has itself suffered tremendously under Covid-19.
The loss of the Fugard as a tenant will affect how it operates.
Lester Kiewiet asked Siraj Desai what his plans are for the building.
Desai is a former High Court judge and Chairperson of the District Six Museum Trust.
It came to us as a total surprise… It affects us very badly. The theatre is a major income stream… I propose to speak to other theatre personalities… Covid will come to an end…Siraj Desai, Chairperson - District Six Museum Trust
Most theatres are under considerable restraint…Siraj Desai, Chairperson - District Six Museum Trust
We’re getting a working theatre… What do we do with that? … It’s well-located and beautiful, it seats more than 300 people…Siraj Desai, Chairperson - District Six Museum Trust
Keeping the museum going is a problem… The majority of people paying to enter the museum are foreign tourists…Siraj Desai, Chairperson - District Six Museum Trust
Listen to the interview in the audio below.
Source : https://www.123rf.com/photo_64140397_empty-theater-stage-curtain-with-dramatic-lights.html?term=theatre&vti=ny5u2eenkt4b3nxyny-1-15
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