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The Baxter Theatre Centre’s proudly Cape Town festive season line-up is set to rock the Mother City with three exciting shows to choose from – by some the country’s top artists – and leading up to the hugely popular New Year’s Eve party which takes place after the performances on the last day of 2017.

Marc Lottering’s highly anticipated Aunty Merle The Musical kicks off the summer fun as one of SA’s favourite comedians brings his beloved character from Belgravia Road, Athlone, to life in the brand new musical with a cast of 14 actors accompanied by an eight-piece band. Jonathan Rubain’s Cape Jazz is Lekke! celebrates Cape-style jazz with some of the finest local musicians and television soapie-star Chantal Stanfield’s one-woman hit show From Koe’siestes to Kneidlach completes the Baxter’s summer programme.

All three productions will culminate with the New Year’s Eve bash in the foyer after the performances and early booking is advised. The shows will start later on the night to coincide with the countdown as some of the stars help the audience to usher in 2018. Ticket prices include the performance of choice, entrance to the party, a complimentary glass of bubbly or orange juice, a spectacular balloon drop and a live band, Chasing Time SA, playing all the perennial dance and sing-along favourites to ring in the New Year.

Marc Lottering has written and stars in the full-scale musical which features his hilarious and darling character, Aunty Merle, even larger-than-life than ever before, along with a star-studded cast, directed by the multi-award-winning Lara Foot with Alistair Izobell as musical director. The original music for the production is written by Tarryn Lamb and Lottering, guaranteed to be one of the highlights of the festive season.The cast comprises Tarryn Lamb, Royston Stoffels, Kate Normington, Adrian Galley, Loukmaan Adams, Carmen Maarman, Stephen Jubber, Anray Amansure, Daniel Richards, Sizwesandile Mnisi, Zandile Madliwa, Tankiso Mamabolo, Roberto Kyle and who take the audience on a trip of twists and turns in the Baxter Theatre, from 30 November to 13 January, with matinee performances.

Aunty Merle has a wedding on her hands. High drama unfolds as her daughter Abigail announces her engagement to Alan, “a good-looking white chap” as the proud mother describes him. Of course, it’s never smooth-sailing when it comes to weddings in any household and this is going to be no exception. Think Belgravia Road, Athlone, meets Bantry Bay, as Merle tries to get everyone to live happily ever after, but is she able to pull off the Wedding of the Year?

In Cape Jazz is Lekke! Jonathan Rubain pays homage to the city’s rich jazz history in what is undoubtedly Rubain’s biggest production yet, perfect for music lovers this summer. He is joined on stage by local legends Hilton Schilder, Allou April, Kyle Shepard and Dave Ledbetter, in a carnival celebration of the unique and prolific jazz compositions inherent to the Mother City. Rubain and the musicians will transport audiences through an eclectic trip down memory lane with this home-grown sound. Cape Jazz is Lekke! runs in the Baxter Concert Hall from 11 December to 13 January at 8.15pm nightly.

Television soapie star Chantal Stanfield’s hilarious one-woman show From Koe’siestes to Kneidlach adds Cape flavour to the Baxter’s festive line up in the Baxter Golden Arrow Studio from 19 December to 6 January. What happens when a nice girl from the Cape Flats meets and falls in love with a nice Jewish boy from Joburg’s East Rand? Stanfield – well-known known for her roles on television in 7de laan and Getroud met Rugby – shares her real life experiences in this story of cross-cultural marriage. It starts with meeting her boyfriend’s family at her first  Shabbos dinner and trying to learn and understand Yiddish, to ultimately, dealing with the confusion of her own identity and questions about her Afro hair – her pride and joy.

Booking for any of these exciting festive season shows or the New Year’s Eve performances and party is through Computicket on 0861 915 8000, online at www.computicket.com or at any Shoprite or Checkers outlet.

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