Calling Me Home – A new original musical

A new original musical premieres in Johannesburg in August.

Johannesburg audiences are in for a treat when the world premiere of the new and original musical, Calling Me Home takes place on 17 August on The Mandela Stage at Joburg Theatre, running until 3 September 2017.

Cape Town audiences get their chance next year with negotations currently taking place to tour the show internationally thereafter.

Calling me Home is a powerful love story of hope, courage, longing and compassion that will resonate with people everywhere. As the audience follows the story of Grace, a young woman, who flees her homeland due to the outbreak of a brutal civil war, it is taken on an exciting journey that stretches from the splendours of the African continent, across the ocean to a great foreign city.

In this new, hugely diverse and colourful community, Grace experiences both joy and great danger. She also falls deeply in love and most importantly, learns the true meaning of ‘home’.

Premiering in Women’s Month, Calling Me Home is a collaboration between two highly creative and powerful women in the South African music and theatre industry.

The book, score and libretto were written by composer and producer Alice Gillham, who is signed with EMI Music Publishing / Sony/ATV and who lives and works in South Africa. She effortlessly fuses the genres of classical music, African hybrid, jazz and traditional folksong to create bewitching and evocative music that brings the story to life, providing her audience with a deeply human and emotional experience.

Joining Gillham in bringing this musical to the stage, is director Magdalene Minnaar. According to Minnaar this production has the potential to have a profound impact on the world.

Says Minnaar; “The content is extremely current and we have incredibly talented people in Africa. You rarely get a chance to be part of a brand new local production of this calibre.”

Calling Me Home depicts the journeys of three women who each find their own personal power.

Lynelle Kenned plays the lead role of Grace in Calling Me Home. Photo by Oscar O'Ryan Photography

Lynelle Kenned plays the lead role of Grace in Calling Me Home. Photo by Oscar O’Ryan Photography

Grace (Lynelle Kenned) a young African woman flees her war-torn homeland to try to survive in a country of concrete cityscapes, crime and danger.

With her is her new friend Lindiwe (Zolani Mahola), who too has fled her home, but in Lindiwe’s case it is a flight from abuse and pain. Finally, there is the beautiful but deeply troubled Isabella (Samantha Peo), who finds the strength and courage to conquer almost insurmountable challenges when she overcomes addiction, both chemical and emotional, to take the moral lead in her community. The work is a global story with far-reaching current relevance.

Samantha Peo is Isabella in Calling Me Home

Samantha Peo is Isabella in Calling Me Home

Zolani Mahola of Freshlyground fame plays Lindiwe in Calling Me Home. Photo by Oscar O'Ryan Photography

Zolani Mahola of Freshlyground fame plays Lindiwe in Calling Me Home. Photo by Oscar O’Ryan Photography

Each cast member of this large ensemble piece will play a vital part in the story.

According to Minnaar, choosing the right artists was critical as they will have the opportunity to bring their characters to life for the very first time. “We have carefully chosen hugely talented singers who bring storytelling energy, creativity and a spirit of adventure to this journey. Their energy is amazing and their talent world-class,” Minnaar stated.

The complete Southern African cast consists of some of the country’s most celebrated stage performers, well-known personalities and some up-and-coming young stars

With a stong emphasis on the music being new and original, composed specifically for the production, Calling Me Home will be releasing a selection of the songs to the public throughout the season.

FLTR Christiaan Snyman (Ivan), Michael McMeeking (Ben), Anthony Downing (Rafael). Photo by Oscar O'Ryan Photography

Christiaan Snyman (Ivan), Michael McMeeking (Ben), Anthony Downing (Rafael). Photo by Oscar O’Ryan Photography

Two songs have been released thus far:

‘Tomorrow’ sung by Lynelle Kenned

https://youtu.be/qdgHvl8axUI 

‘Calling Me Home’ sung by Zolani Mahola

https://youtu.be/qdgHvl8axUI 

Calling Me Home runs at Joburg Theatre from 17 August – 3 September 2017.

Performances are Tuesdays to Fridays at 20h00; Saturdays at 15h00 and 20h00 and Sundays at 14h00.

Ticket prices range from R180 – R420. And can be booked online at www.joburgtheatre.com or by calling the Box Office on 0861 670 670 or through Webtickets.

For group bookings of 10 or more tickets, contact Joburg Theatre’s ticketing office on (011) 877 6853/4.

The duration of the show is 2 hours 20 minutes excluding interval.

Christiaan Snyman (Ivan), Carly Graeme (Angie) in Calling Me Home. Photo-Oscar O'Ryan Photography

Christiaan Snyman (Ivan), Carly Graeme (Angie) in Calling Me Home. Photo-Oscar O’Ryan Photography

Press release courtesy of The CoLab Network.

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