Dolf van Niekerk

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Dolf van Niekerk (1929-2022) is a South African author, dramatist, radio presenter and academic.


Born Rudolf Johannes van Niekerk in Edenburg in the Free State on 22 February 1929, and matriculated at the Edenburg High School. Completing a B.A. at the University College of the Orange Free State in Bloemfontein in 1949, he also obtained an honours degree in Philosophy from the University of South Africa (Unisa) in 1950 and a Master of Arts degree at the University of Pretoria in 1967.

In 1950 he became a radio presenter and producer and in 1957 was appointed the head of the radio department for the Department of Agriculture. He became the director of the Agriculture Information Directorate in 1978, a position he held until his retirement in 1994. He was also an Emeritus Professor of the University of Pretoria, a position he held until his retirement in 1994.

He passed away in Pretoria on 31 December 2022.

His contribution to South African theatre, film, media and performance

Besides his work as publicist, Van Niekerk also wrote poetry, prose and plays for stage, radio and TV.

His stage plays are Kwart voor Dagbreek ("Quarter to Daybreak" - 1961), Die Paddas ("The Frogs" - 1968),

His radio plays are Kamer 99 ("Room 99" - 1972), Niemand se Dag nie ("Nobody's Day" - 1982) and the collection of radio sketches called 'n Bietjie Luisterkuier.

His two television texts, Die Nagloper ("The Night Walker") and Die Lykbesorgers ("The funeral directors") are contained in the collection Die Nagloper, 1976;

In addition to his own dramatic work, some of his prose works were prescribed reading for schools, and were dramatized for educational theatre productions. These include Die Son Struikel ("The sun stumbles", 1960),

A number of them were also filmed, including Skadu's van Gister (1974)


Obituary: Die Burger, 3 January, 2023: p. 3.

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