Cellist with Rabies

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Creativate Productions
16+ (MNP)

Language: English
Director: Jaco Bouwer
Company: Jemma Kahn

Writer: Jemma Kahn
Performers: Jemma Kahn & David Viviers
Set Design: Rocco Pool

Jemma Kahn uses the kamishibai, a fascinating form of Japanese street theatre, to explore uniquely South African themes with universal reach 

A virologist, on the precipice of making the first major breakthrough in rabies research since Louis Pasteur, is caught off guard when the rabies virus in her petri dish begins talking to her. Cellist with Rabies, a new South African play from a multi-award-winning team, pushes the boundaries of kamishibai to tell a story of disease, failure and breakfast.

Director Jaco Bouwer (Rooiland, Balbesit, Samsa-masjien), who is equally at home in theatre, dance, site-specific performance and installation art, creates work that is conceptual and dense; allowing viewers to get a view of his complex cultural critique.

Jemma Kahn (The Epicene Butcher, We Didn’t Come to Hell for the Croissants) is well known for creating a new visual theatre genre based on the Japanese paper theatre, kamishibai. Her plays are intensely collaborative across artistic media, often centering on her interest in erotic nihilism.

Jaco Bouwer and Jemma Kahn are both previous winners of the Standard Bank Young Artist Award for Theatre (#Untitled and The Borrow Pit respectively). Cellist with Rabies is their first collaboration.

A facilitated post-performance discussion will take place with director and cast immediately after the performance on 1 July at 11:00

This production forms part of the Creativate Digital Arts Festival programme, supported by Standard Bank.

Creativate Digital Arts Festival 2019



  1. Siyandanorman112 29 June 2019 at 8:04 am

    Does it better than this? Probably not.

  2. carolynn.bruton 29 June 2019 at 8:50 pm

    Don’t miss Gemma Kahn’s latest production. It is an unique love story which will appeal to scientists, lovers, microbiologists and romantics. It was the highlight of #NAF19 for me.

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