First Afrikaans chat group comedy debuts soon

The Klein Karoo National Arts Festival (KKNK) presents yet another digital first from 13 to 19 December by creating a platform for theatre of a different kind.

Koeël deur die kerk , is theatre of a different kind that uses the all too familiar family chat group as its premise,” says Hugo Theart, Artistic Director of the KKNK.

This family comedy plays out over a seven-day period. “Audience members will be a fly on the wall observing this family unit in the build up to - and aftermath of - the wedding of Ben Oppelt and Jani de Wet. All the well-known chat app elements are used in the telling of the story, including text messages, voice notes, videos, memes, emojis and more,” Theart explains.

You can follow the shenanigans of this family group for free using a web-based app from either computers or smartphones. Register at ( and watch as the hilarity and drama unfold from 09:00 on Monday 13 December.The characters’ communications will occur over the course of the week and messages will be posted over the course of their travels to the wedding destination as well as updates from the wedding day itself.

Llandi Beeslaar created the storyline and directed this family drama, with Eldon van der Merwe (Ben, the groom), Greteli Fincham (Jani, the bride), Esther von Waltsleben (Chrissy, mother of the bride and ex-wife of Christiaan), Melt Sieberhagen (Christiaan, father of the bride), Ira Blankenberg (Belinda, Christiaan’s new wife), Lee-Ann van Rooi (Deborah, mother of the groom), Charlton George (David, father of the groom), Cole Wessels (Joey, brother of the groom), June van Merch (Verney, grandma of the groom), Elandré Schwartz (best man) and Lara Hattingh (sister of the bride).

Kknk | Klein Karoo National Arts Festival | Oudtshoorn | South Africa
Klein Karoo National Arts Festival | Oudtshoorn | South Africa

“We are very excited to bring theatre to our audiences in this refreshing yet familiar format. To ensure you don’t miss out on all the intrigue, comedy and drama of the wedding of the year, make sure to register and switch on your notifications.” Theart concludes.

The KKNK is supported by Absa and Koeël deur die kerk is made possible with the support of the Nasionale Afrikaanse Teater-inisiatief (NATi).

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