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10 March 2020 | Story Rulanzen Martin | Photo Victor Sguassero (kykNET)
Chris Vorster
Chris was on stage in 'Die Hart Verklap' at the Toyota US Woordfees in Stellenbosch recently.

“Difficult and very strange,” is how Chris Vorster, veteran actor and Drama lecturer at the University of the Free State (UFS) describes his role as Bas Koorts in the supernatural thriller Die Spreeus

For Chris, the biggest challenge during the filming of Die Spreeus was to work in front of a green screen. “You never see the monsters and things attacking you, it is only added later on during the editing process,” he said. Therefore, he and his co-actors were expected to use their own imagination “to be frightened, and to duck and dive from something that does not exist.” 

This Afrikaans thriller series has recently been nominated in five categories of the South African Film and Television Awards, including Best Television Drama, Best Cinematography, and Original Sound and Sound Editing. 

Chris was also nominated for a Fiësta award in 2019 for his one-man performance in the theatre production, Die Hart verklap. “It is fantastic to still be recognised for my work,” he said, “but I also have to give recognition to Dion van Niekerk, because without a good director, any actor will be lost.” Van Niekerk also lectures Drama at the UFS.

Being a lecturer broadens his knowledge 

Chris joined the UFS Department of Drama and Theatre Arts in 2015 as lecturer in the programme for Film en Visual Media. “Everything I learn in the industry I apply as lecturer, and research and teaching feed more knowledge on acting, directing, and especially writing,” he said. After five years, being involved with the UFS Department of Drama is still exciting to him. “This is where both lecturers and students get encouraged to do more than just breathing.” 

With his busy schedule of teaching and acting, it remains important to him that South Africans are still able to tell stories – “in any language”. He considers it a privilege for anyone to work in their mother tongue. This is also why the symbiosis between his work as actor and lecturer is so appealing.

News Archive

Like Idols for scientists
2014-04-10

Kovsie student and scientist Karabelo Moloantoa recently represented the Free State in the South African finals of the FameLab competition during the Sci-Fest in Grahamstown.

Karabelo is a 24-year-old student doing his master’s in Biotechnology. He completed his Bachelor’s degree in Medical Microbiology, as well as his Honours degree in Biochemistry at Kovsies. His research is focused on Bioremediation of mine waste waters.

“FameLab is like the scientists Idols taking place annually,” says Karabelo.

“In the competition we are given three minutes to explain a science aspect to a non-science audience. There are 25 countries that participate. South Africa is the only African country participating.”

“I was called by one of my lecturers an hour before the local competition took place at the National Museum in Bloemfontein. I was actually still tired from playing volleyball the night before,” he explains. “I was unprepared and without slides, but I did my presentation.”

This was the first year Karabelo entered FameLab and although he was somewhat unprepared for the local competition in Bloemfontein, he was nominated to represent the Free State in Grahamstown at the Sci-Fest event. From the 18 semifinalists, Karabelo qualified to go the finals where the 9 finalists were competing to represent South Africa in the United Kingdom for the international finals.

“I did not win the UK trip, but I made it to the finals, which is an achievement as half of the semi-finalists could not make it to the finals,” says Karabelo.

“I feel like I have done well to represent the university and the province as a whole. It was amazing to speak in front of more than 800 people, delivering my presentation. I learnt a lot and improved my skills of communicating scientific aspects. I will definitely enter again next year.”

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