Leila Henriques

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Leila Henriques (19*-). Actress, teacher, writer and director.


She grew up in Johannesburg.



After leaving school, she trained at the Oxford School of Drama, and spent two years working at various locations in London, including the Tabard Theatre, which specialised in new writing.


On returning to South Africa she joined the innovative Loft Theatre Company in Durban. But it was at the Market Theatre in Johannesburg where she did some of her most challenging and exciting work with Barney Simon and others.

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

She has performed in both film and theatre. Roles include Silent Movie, Hedda Gabler, Pygmalion (Shaw, 1994), Hysteria (1995), Madeleine in Indiscretions (1996), Spinning Out, Shooting Billy the Kid, Kindertransport, The Great Outdoors.

Her directing credits include Yerma, Road, and Midwinter (all at the Wits Theatre), Iago's Last Dance (Mike van Graan, 2012), Red Shoes ( Wits and New York University), The List (Tremblay, 2013).

Co-edited a book on Barney Simon entitled The World in an Orange: Creating Theatre with Barney Simon with Irene Stephanou. (Short-listed for the Alan Paton award for Non Fiction.

Awards, etc

Leila won a Vita Award (Gauteng region) as best supporting actress in 1997 for her role in Indiscretions.

She was nominated for a DALRO best actress in 1993 for Silent Movie.


Tucker, 1997.

Press release for The List, 29 March 2013.

Stephanou and Henriques, 2006.

Various entries in the NELM catalogue.

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