Lara Foot is CEO and Artistic Director of the Baxter Theatre Centre and has won numerous South African theater accolades. She has put most of her energy into helping other playwrights and theater-makers realize their work, and she has nurtured several dozen new South African plays to their first staging. This includes producing the international hit Mies Julie, written and directed by Yaël Farber.
Since heading up the Baxter Theatre Centre she has transformed the theater's development program--the Zabalaza Theatre Festival--so that it has become recognized and respected as one of the most vital and important platforms of its kind in South Africa. As a former Rolex protégée to Sir Peter Hall, she hosted a unique cultural gathering at the Baxter with mentors William Kentridge, Wole Soyinka, and Peter Sellars alongside seven protégés.
Her own hard-hitting plays tackle social issues and have laid bare the brutality and sickening frequency of child rape in South Africa. Tshepang (2002) was based on a real event, the alleged gang rape of a nine-month-old baby by six men in a remote, impoverished community. Foot used refined, ironic humor to sketch a portrait of the community, and then turned everyday objects into symbols with horrific poetic effect. Karoo Moose (2007) returned to the subject of child rape and a rural town--a shattered, forsaken community where "there are no fathers." A 15-year-old girl is sold for sex to pay off the gambling debts of her jobless and spiritually crushed father, "an opportunist with no opportunities." In Solomon and Marion, Foot explores the cruelty of the meaningless murders which betray her country. Solomon and Marion, Hear and Now, Karoo Moose, and Tshepang are published by Oberon Books.
Current as of March 2014