Robert Finlayson

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Robert Finlayson. (19*-) Actor.


He was born in the Cape Winelands in South Africa.

He is a founding member of Artists Against Aids - a South African charity organisation.


Robert studied at the University of Stellenbosch Drama Department (until 1983) and the University of Cape Town Drama Department (1984 and 1985) where he graduated with a bilingual Performers Diploma.


He started his career working for CAPAB on a freelance basis. He took a permanent contract with PACT in 1988.

Around 1996 he moved to London, and his international credits include Fame, (the Cambridge Theatre), The Rocky Horror Show (the English Theater, Frankfurt), Miss Saigon (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane), La Cage Aux Folles (the English Theater of Frankfurt).

Television credits include a lead role in Hidden City and Hidden City II, a series screened in Ireland.

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

As a student he had roles in The Zoo Story (Stellenbosch, 1983), The Crucible (Stellenbosch, 1983), Liefdeskringloop (UCT 1984), The Trojan Women (1984), Spring Awakening (1984), Die Van Aardes van Grootoor (UCT 1984), Personal Column (1985).

He appeared in Anatomie Titus for CAPAB. He had roles in Romeo & Juliet (as "Romeo", Maynardville 1988), A Lad 'n a Lamp (PACT 1988). Subsequent roles include Pieter-Dirk Uys's Just Like Home at the Edinburgh Festival (19*), Just Like Home (Pieter-Dirk Uys, 1989) (Market Theatre, 19*).

Other productions include The Martian Chronicles (PACT 1988), Fred Abrahamse’s production of A Midsummer Night's Dream at the Laager, Market Theatre in 1989, Die Park (1990), The Phantom of the Opera (Drin’s stage play, CAPAB 1990).

Musical credits include of Camelot at the State Theatre and the national tour (PACT 1989), Grease (State Theatre, 19*), Forever Plaid (Richard Loring, 1993), Hair (19*) Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Theatre on the Track, 19*), The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me (Market Theatre, 1995), a national tour of West Side Story (1996).

After 10 years in London, Robert returned to South Africa in 2006 to star as Judas Iscariot in the Pieter Toerien production of Jesus Christ Superstar at Montecasino Theatre, running until the end of June, before the production travelled to Cape Town.

Aspects of Love 2009.

TV work includes Come to my House and Jollers.

Awards, etc

He won a Vita Award (Gauteng region) as best lead actor for his role in The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me in 1996.

He was nominated for both a national Vita Award and a Fleur du Cap Award for his role in West Side Story, award years 1996 and 1997.


Photographs of productions held by NELM: [Collection: MARKET THEATRE]: 2007. 10. 10. 117. 3 and [Collection: MARKET THEATRE]: 2004. 30. 5. 44.

Tucker, 1997. 474, 482.

Die Burger, 28 January 1997.

The Star, 16 May 2006.

Go to ESAT Bibliography

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