Art Scene

Our “Paraphernalia” at NATA.


Paraphernalia, a quirky story about our ‘stuff’

New Africa Theatre Association (NATA) everyday from 16 to 21 of April 2011

Most of us collect stuff – we accumulate, buy, gather, chase and desire the latest item or gadget. But will it truly make us happy?

Paraphernalia is a quirky theatrical experience that questions the notion of “bigger is better” consumerism. Cosmos Productions, under the direction of Jacqueline van Meygaarden and created in collaboration with a stellar cast of physical and visual performers; Daniel Robinson, Andrea van Meygaarden and Nadia Woodward, will be performing this gem of a play, which explores what we think we need in life to be content.

A huge success in Grahamstown, Paraphernalia follows the parallel stories of two 'best friends' that begin to diverge as Stanley gets a promotion. This results in Stanley finding himself heading down a one way road, discovering his dormant desire to buy, spend, purchase, more and more. This impulse to consume, results in a formidable spending spree. Ronnie, on the other hand, grapples with 'second best' syndrome. Can Stanley find his way back to reality or will he sabotage his life's desire? And will Ronnie survive the dump? An inspiring tale of true friendship in a materialistic world of consumerism.

The show incorporates a number of visual theatre styles – mask theatre, puppetry, illusion and stop frame animation. These elements are combined on stage to tell a story of how we interact with everyday objects in the modern world. Paraphernalia looks at the cycle of buying that we are accustomed to, which is eroding our humanity. We start to loose connections in our relationship with people, and give up the things that we are important to us in a favour of consumerism and the latest fads.

Directed by: Jacqueline van Meygaarden

Performed by: Daniel Robinson, Andrea van Meygaarden, Nadia Woodward & Stephen Davis

Masks designed by: Jesse Kramer, Liezel Reddeck

What others had to say:

 “An insightful and emotive look at consumerism in the modern world… Half absurdist, half comedia dell'arte, this multimedia piece is endearing and innovative. Its use of daily objects as moving, living characters along with gorgeously choreographed stage movements is captivating and thus this show becomes a shining example of true fringe theatre." The CUE Newspaper, Grahamstown 2010

"The show makes some of the most creative use of simple props you're likely to

see on the fringe…" THE HERALD, Port Elizabeth 2009

A very strong sense of French physical theatre – Commedia del Arte”, KARABO KGOLENG, SAFM RADIO 2009

Cosmos Productions is a visual theatre and documentary production company based in Cape Town, South Africa, which creates original theatre using a variety of artistic styles including puppetry, movement and video.

Established in 2008 by Jacqueline van Meygaarden, the company is primarily concerned with social and environmental issues, and they develop innovative, thought-provoking ways of telling stories that effect change in their viewers. They inspire people to see their value in contributing positively to humanity and to the well-being of our planet. « Creativity and integrity form our core values in all projects we undertake, »van Meygaarden explains.

Cosmos Productions is also an award-winning documentary film production company that produces videos for NGOs and arts organizations.

Paraphernalia will be performing at New Africa Theatre Association (NATA), 43 Golf Course Road, Sybrand Park, everyday from 16 to 21 of April, 2011.

Performance times vary, see below: 

16 April: 10.30am & 8.15pm

17 April: 2.30pm

18 & 19: 6.30pm

20 & 21: 8.15pm


R50 for adults and R30 for learners, block bookings of 10 or more and senior citizens.

For further enquiries and interviews please contact:

Nathalie Rosa Bucher on 0768 310 434




Facebook Event: Paraphernalia

Paraphernalia is made possible by the following funders and sponsors:

Misereor, Starke Ayres Garden Centre, Project 90 by 2030, and Business Arts South Africa (BASA).

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