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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

Tswelopele hosts first LGBTQI panel discussion
2016-10-05

Description: LGBTQI  Tags: LGBTQI

Tshepang Mahlatsi, Zane Thela, Dionne van
Reenen, Dr Thierry Luescher and Galeletsang
Soato, at the Brotherhood with no Limit panel
discussion held at Tswelopele residence on
the Bloemfontein Campus.
Photo: Supplied

Ignorance about issues relating to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Intersex (LGBTQI) community is a threat to mankind. This is according to Tshepang Mahlatsi, former Prime of Tswelopele residence, regarding LGBTQI concerns at University of the Free State (UFS).

House Tswelopele on the Bloemfontein Campus hosted a panel discussion, Brotherhood with no Limit, on 19 September 2016 to discuss issues affecting the LGBTQI community, which has often been on the receiving end of criticism, hate speech and bigotry.

Academics take stance at LGBTQI discussion

The panel, which consisted of staff members and students, opened the discussion to everyone on campus. The panel comprised Zane Thela, Programme Coordinator: Gender and Sexual Equity Office: Student Affairs; Dionne van Reenen, Assistant Researcher; Dr Thierry Luescher, Assistant Director, Directorate for Institutional Research and Academic Planning, and Mahlatsi.

Creating a safer environment for LQBTQI dialogue

“The message that we were putting across was simple. We as a house cannot allow society to define our own brothers for us,” Mahlatsi said. The responsibility of students and student leaders was to stand in solidarity. He said it was not fair that in the 21st century people were still fighting to be recognised for who they were and what they identified themselves as. This issue had been discussed at Tswelopele before and it was not that much of an issue, Mahlatsi said. “However, this was the first formal one [discussion] where we had speakers who are more informed on the topic.”

The panel discussion also aimed to challenge other residences that still do not allow such talks to take place in a safe environment.

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