Tot Leering en Vermaak

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Tot Leering en Vermaak ("For learning and entertainment") was the motto under which Het Hollandsch Liefhebbery Genootschap ("the Dutch amateur company") performed in Cape Town (1803-1804).

This was the oldest known Dutch theatre company in the Cape. While Zaïre by Voltaire may have been its very first production (on 29 January, 1803), its first (stated) performance was De Papegaay (Von Kotzebue) on March 5 1803. This was followed inter alia by a performance on 18 July 1803 (unknown play) and one on 24 September (De Elfde Junius by Holberg). Their last official performance was apparently a performance of Bramarbas, of De Snoevende Officier (a Dutch translation of Jacob von Tyboe, eller Den Stortalende Soldat, also by Holberg) on May 18, 1804, performed as a charity event in aid of the burnt down Drostdy of Stellenbosch.

From 1804 to 1809 there were no new Dutch theatre companies at the Cape. Tot Leering en Vermaak was most likely the predecessor of the influential Dutch company Tot Nut en Vermaak, founded in 1809.



F.C.L. Bosman, 1928. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel I: 1652-1855. Pretoria: J.H. de Bussy. [1]: pp. 56, 82, 116, 131

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