Jan van Tonder

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Jan van Tonder (1954-) is a journalist, author and playwright.


Born Jan Christiaan van Tonder om 29 August 1954 in Sabie in die Eastern Transvaal, but grew up in Durban. and completed his matriculation at Stanger. Having completed his military training at the Simonstown navy base in 1973, byhe went to the University of Pretoria, where he intended stydining for the ministry, but later changed courses, completing a B.A. degree in Afrikaans, Psychology and Criminology in 1978. After serving in the prison service in Durban for a year (1979) and two years as a a industrial training officer for two years, he became a journalist, inter alia for Die Transvaler , Die Vaderland and the SABC.

He began writing stories while working for the prison service, turning professional and full time author in 1988, and had published 11 novels by 2022.

Contribution to SA theatre, film, media and/or performance

Besides his novels, he has also written a few plays and a film script.

His plays include Lewensreg (first produced by the University of the Free State Drama Department in 2007) and Die Onbeholpe Djin (his first play, though only produced by Delo Produksies in 2011).

He co-wrote the script for the film Roepman, based on his award-winning novel of the same name.

Awards, etc




Beeld, 26 September 2011.


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