Die Wildsboudjie

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Die Wildsboudjie ("The [little] leg of venison") is the title of a play and of a film (based on the play)

Die Wildsboudjie, the play (1940)

It is a play in four acts by Fritz Steyn (1913-1986).

The text

One of the most enduring of Afrikaans farces, it systematically tells of the unmasking of five illegal hunters in the Bushveld. According to J.C. Kannemeyer (1984: p. 346), it can be seen as a series of dramas within a drama (" 'n reeks ‘dramas’ binne 'n drama"). The play was vastly popular in the 1940s and 1950s, and filmed in 1946. It was successfully revived in the 1980s.

First published by Voortrekkerpers[1] in 1941 and also in Die Lewe is ‘n Speeltoneel by Afrikaanse Pers-Boekhandel (1959). Fourteen editions of the text were published between 1941 and 1974.

Performance history in South Africa

1940: First produced by Volksteater on 14-16 November, 1940, directed by Anna Neethling-Pohl and Egmont Behrens. On 12 and 13 November 1941 a K.A.T. production was directed by Marguerite I. Murray, subsequently touring to Ceres and Observatory.

1985: A professional revival at the H.B. Thom Theatre on 28 March 1985 and at the Nico Malan Theatre from 3 April 1985 was a smashing commercial success for director Pieter Fourie for CAPAB, with veteran actors Schalk Jacobsz, Paul Malherbe, Cobus Rossouw and Louw Verwey playing the four major parts. Other cast members were Antoinette Kellermann, Lynita Crofford, Francois Viljoen and André Roothman. Design by Christopher Lorentz, lighting by Malcolm Hurrell.

1986: Performed by Die Bywoners during the Johannesburg Festival, with Schalk Jacobsz, Cobus Rossouw, Ernst Eloff and Paul Malherbe and also performed for SUKOVS in Bloemfontein.

Translations and adaptations

Adapted for radio and broadcast by the SABC Afrikaans Service


J.C. Kannemeyer. 1984. Geskiedenis van die Afrikaanse Literatuur 1. Tafelberg Uitgewers[2]: pp.346.

Nel, 1972


Die Wildsboudjie theatre programme, CAPAB 1985.

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Die Wildsboudjie, the film (1946)

The play was filmed by Unifilms Productions in 1946, produced by Francis Coley, co-directed by Arthur Bennett and Louis Knobel with Frederik Burgers, Emgee Pretorius, Tienie Stiglingh, Jan Jourdan, Hansje Hendrikz, Antonius Ferreira, Frances Fuchs, and M.S. du Buson. The screenplay by Ina Albertyn, based on the Fritz Steyn play.




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