The new original pocket musical Actress, conceived and written by Talia Kodesh and Bruce Dennill and starring Talia Kodesh, with direction by Daniel Geddes, will be on stage at Pieter Toerien’s Studio Theatre at Montecasino from 27th September – 8th October 2023.
Actress is a musical dramedy; a funny, moving story of a woman trying to define (and succeed in) her different roles – actress, wife, mother, daughter, teacher, and more – while juggling the complexities of all of those responsibilities.
The story takes place in New York and South Africa, following ‘Actress’ on her journey through stress and success, anger and auditions, triumph and tears, dance and delirium and, perhaps, the possibility of peace. There is also assistance and emotional support from an unexpected source…
It’s a tale that anyone who has ever had to adjust to new expectations in all walks of life – their own or someone else’s – will relate to.
Plus showtunes! Pack your dancing shoes, your Theraband, your passport and your tissues.
The show also features eight original songs by musician and renowned arts journalist, Bruce Dennill.
Audiences will remember Talia’s beautiful portrayal of ‘Belle’ in Beauty and the Beast (for which she received a Naledi Nomination), her feisty ‘Mimi’ in RENT, her sassy ‘Ozzy Osborn’ in the original SA staging of We Will Rock You, among so many other memorable roles throughout the years – all making her one of South Africa’s musical theatre sweethearts before taking some time out to focus on motherhood.
Says Talia: “Actors are fundamentally storytellers. I’ve simply loved doing just that throughout my career. It feels like I’ve come full circle since performing in 2012 in ‘The Last Five Years’ at the Studio Theatre at Montecasino, after which, I became a mother and temporarily stepped off the stage.
How exhilarating for me to return there, not only starring in a production, but having created it – a long-held dream come true.
I cannot wait for audiences to meet ‘Actress’ – I’m certain they will relate to her!”
While living in New York in 2010, Talia’s head was flooded with ideas and saved them for when the time was right to do a one-woman show. Then on a fateful morning a decade later, over a casual coffee, a friend and colleague, Bruce Dennill, helped bring these ideas to life in Actress! And the rest, as they say, is history!
The original songs by Bruce Dennill range from quiet, thoughtful, introspective musings to big, ballsy, belted showstoppers. As with the story, Talia and Bruce wanted the music to help define and give colour to the many moods and spaces ‘Actress’ has to navigate, and the dynamics and lyrics in the songs really achieve that.
Says Bruce of his involvement; “I have, happily, long received good feedback from industry professionals I respect about my strengths as a musical storyteller. So when Talia suggested that I might be able to help translate the sense of what she wanted to communicate with this show into both a script and songs she could sing on stage, it felt like a perfect fit – and we’re both so happy with the way it’s all turned out!”
Actress is on stage at Pieter Toerien’s Studio Theatre at Montecasino from Wednesday, 27th September – Sunday, 8th October 2023.
Performances run from Wednesdays – Fridays at 19h30, Saturdays at 15h00 & 19h30 & Sundays at 15h00.
Tickets range from R180 – R220.
Pensioner, scholar & student discounts are available.
Bookings are via Webtickets , Pick ‘n Pay Outlets or the Montecasino Theatre Box Office on 011 511 1988.
For Group Bookings, contact Geraldine on email email@example.com or call on 011 511 1988.
Actress stars Talia Kodesh and features Nathan Ro as a mystery character.
A dream team of creatives, with multiple Naledi, Fleur Du Cap and Vita Awards and Nominations among them, has come on board to join Talia in realising her dream of creating her own show.
Written and conceived by Talia Kodesh and Bruce Dennill.
Directed by Daniel Geddes with sets and costumes by Sarah Roberts.
Lighting design is by Denis Hutchinson and sound design by Henry Underhay.
Original music and lyrics by Bruce Dennill, musical direction by Bruce Dennill and Paul Elliott and arrangements by Paul Elliott.
Actress is proudly produced by Collett Dawson of The CoLab Network.
Producer Collett Dawson concludes; “It’s invigorating seeing the rejuvenation of our theatre industry that took such a knock during Covid. Even more so, seeing creatives taking that leap of faith and originating new works. I have so much admiration and respect for Talia and Bruce, and to be part of the team bringing Actress to life is such good food for the soul! Joburg – I hope you come out in your numbers to support!”