who is nathalie vijver

The life of a performer chooses you. It becomes your life… your everything.

My life as a performer began at the age of 5 when I started Ballet classes which developed into years of Dance training and performing. It was at the University of Cape Town where I honed my Acting and Dramatic skills and was awarded the Victoria League Scholarship and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Honours Degree in Drama.  Since then, I have taught Drama in schools locally and in the United Kingdom – my current position being Head of the Drama Department for the full time tertiary Diploma Course in Dance and Theatre Related Studies at the Cape Academy of Performing Arts (CAPA), a post I have held since 2005.  In parallel, I founded the Nathalie Vijver School of Drama in 2005 – an independent business running from and in association with CAPA.

In addition to teaching, I have maintained a career in acting (film, television, theatre, corporate theatre and professional dance) and feel strongly about preserving and instilling professionalism within the performing arts.  My passion for the performing arts extends to writing, directing, devising, workshopping and creating theatre. I hope to transfer this passion by developing each student into a confident young adult and performer – unleashing their imagination and stimulating creativity.  Through progressive devising and workshopping, I uphold an aspiration to create original theatre performance, relevant to our contemporary context.

 

Achievements

Drama Productions:

  • I have created and directed three Drama productions (on the Full Time students of CAPA) which were well received at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival. “Fight Sin”, “Kissing Frogs” and “Razor Tongue”. “Fight Sin” was adapted for the Cape Dance Company into a full length ballet which I directed, “The Devil’s Company”, which was performed at The Masque Theatre and the Grahamstown Festival.
  •  “Kissing Frogs” – ‘One of the hidden gems of the fringe. See it if you possibly can’ – Leon Muston, Arts editor, The Herald 2008
  • Co-Director of “BitterSweet” which went to the Grahamstown National Arts Festival in 2013 and was awarded a Standard Bank Ovation Award for Excellence. “BitterSweet” had another run at Artscape Theatre at the end of 2013. Latoya Newman of the Cape Argus and The Star said of this production “… the audience jumped out of their seats in unison for an ovation, as though they couldn’t wait.  It’s that good.”
  • Co-Director of “Between the Lines” which premiered on the Arena at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival and was chosen to perform at the inaugural Cape Town Fringe in September 2014.
  • Co-Director of “BitterSweet” which returned to the Grahamstown National Arts Festival in 2014 and “BitterSweet Reloaded” at Artscape Theatre November/December 2014.

 

School of Drama Productions:

  • NV School of Drama participated in CAPA’s Artscape production “What a Wonderful World” in March 2011. I was one of the co-directors of the production. I wrote original material and helped conceptualise the show.
  • NV School of Drama also performed at the Masque Theatre in June 2011 & 2012
  • CAPA’s intergrated show (Dance, Drama and Singing) “Dreamcatcher” in December 2011 at Artscape Theatre. The show had a combination of drama pieces from the full time students and the NV drama school students.
  • Selected * students from NV Drama School were MC’s for the Western Province Dance Teachers Association Showcase in 2010 & 2012 held at Artscape Theatre.
  • 2012 – In December CAPA has a season at Artscape Theatre where students from NV School of Drama will be given an opportunity to perform.
  • 2012 “Bliss-Full”, 2013 “BitterSweet” & 2014 “BitterSweet Reloaded” – In December CAPA has a season at Artscape Theatre…etc etc…were given an opportunity to perform

 

Eisteddfods:

NV school has been participating in Cape Town Speech and Drama Eisteddfod since 2007

2007 – Gold Diploma for Acted Story Grades 10-12 “Oh the places you’ll go”
‘A beautifully conceived idea’ – Chris Fourie 2007

2008 – Winner of the Cape Town Eisteddfod Award for the most outstanding senior group dramatic extract “Feedback”. This piece performed in The Edinburgh Festival in 2010 and at the Grahamstown Festival in 2008

2009 –Winner of the Speech Teachers Award for the most outstanding Experimental group 17 years and over.
‘Well thought out, well rounded piece of work’ – CT Drama Eisteddfod 2009

2010 – Winner of the Irma Kessler Junior Award for the Best Acted Story grade 5-7

2011 – Winner of the Irma Kessler Senior Award for the Best Acted Story grade 8&9 “Lemony Snicket”
‘A mature and powerful performance. This is stunning work!’ – Sue Diepeveen
Performed at the Masque Theatre June 2011

2011 – Gold Diploma for Acted Story Grade 6&7 “Hot Hippo”
‘Just lovely. Lucky to have such a clever teacher and such talented pupils’ – Sue Diepeveen

2011 – All Solo Dramatic Extracts and Creative Adverts received Gold Diplomas.

2012 – All groups were awarded Diploma (90-100%) and 4 groups went through into the finals and 2 groups won their sections.

2012 – Winner of the Cape Town Eisteddfod Award Grades 9-12 Group Dramatic Extract “Addams Family”.
‘Your piece was very well rehearsed, focused and polished. Really strong piece!’ – Sue Diepeveen

2012 – Winner of the Irma Kessler Award Grades 8-12 Acted Stories “Voorkamer Stories”
‘Good choice. Great timing. Good, strong miming. Lovely interaction. Very tight performance and your movement was very controlled. Brilliant piece of work!’ – Sue Diepeveen

2012 NV School of Drama participated in the TDA (Theatre Dance Association) Eisteddfod for the first time. 2 students walked away with the biggest and most coverted awards: Most Outstanding Entrant Any Age – Londiwe Khoza and the Wow! You were Fabulous! Award Trophy – Aviwe November. The NV School of Drama also won the Junior Own Choice Poem, Intermediate Duologue, Intermediate Drama Group and Senior Own Choice Monologue.

2013 – Cape Town Eisteddfod – was awarded the Jose Matthews Award for senior Group Theme for ‘A slight HITCH’, was awarded the Cape Town eisteddfod Award for Junior Group Dramatic Extract for ‘Giraffe’s can’t Dance’, was awarded the Cape Town Eisteddfod award for Intermediate Group Dramatic Extract to ‘Corpse Bride’, all the marks, solo’s and groups achieved between 85-100%

2013 – Theatre Dance Association Eisteddfod of the Performing Arts – Senior Experiment was awarded 100% and won the overall performance of the Speech and Drama Eisteddfod. Rudzani Moleya was awarded the best senior student in the Eisteddfod and Neline Theron the highest scoring junior entrant. Emma Sonn was the winner of the junior solo poem 7-10yrs. Candice Tollman was placed 2nd in the Intermediate Solo Dramatic Extract section. All the students achieved between 80 – 100%

2014 – Cape Town Drama Eisteddfod – all the students were awarded marks between 80 – 100% “Dr Seuss” won the Sheila Weinrich/Lazarus Award for Junior Group Theme, “Lemony Snicket” won the Cape Town Eisteddfod Award for Intermediate Acted Story, “Chaplin’ won the Cape Town Eisteddfod Award for Intermediate Group Theme, “Epitaph” was awarded the best Post Matric Group Theme, “Kung Fu” won the best Post Matric Acted Story, “Crimes of the Heart” won the best Intermediate Duologue. Neline Theron was awarded the Junior Bursary and Nathan Bartman was awarded the Senior Bursary.