Much-loved Cape Town comedian Marc Lottering has won a revered Naledi Award for his smash-hit show, Aunty Merle: it’s A Girl.

The Naledi Theatre Awards is South Africa’s longest standing national awards organisation dedicated to the professional theatre industry. It was founded in 2004 and is recognised as the Premier Awards Event on the Gauteng Theatre Calendar.

The selection process covers all mainstream professional productions from the period January 1 to December 1 of the previous year and the Naledi Judges typically evaluate over 100 productions in 30 categories. This year they had 50 judges from the industry who were divided into 6 panels best suited to their field of expertise.

The Awards, typically held in person, were live-streamed on Sunday, September 13 due to the ongoing pandemic.

Lottering won the award for Best Male Lead Performance in a Musical for his portrayal of the ever-hilarious Aunty Merle. The musical was also written by Lottering, and had multiple runs at the Baxter Theatre due to its immense popularity.

The multi-talented actor took to social media to celebrate his win, writing: News just in! AUNTY MERLE just won a Naledi Theatre Award! 😍 I raise a glass theee most Phenomenal Cast, Crew, Musicians and Production Team. The Luckiest Boy in the World is from Retreat.”

News just in! AUNTY MERLE just won a Naledi Theatre Award! 😍 I raise a glass theee most Phenomenal Cast, Crew, Musicians…

Posted by Marc Lottering on Sunday, 13 September 2020

Other notable winners include one of the most respected and loved playwrights in the world, Athol Fugard, who won the World Impact Award. The Life Time Achievement Award was given to multi-talented Annabel Linder, who has spent almost 60 years in the Industry

“2019 again proved to be an exceptional year for theatre in South Africa,” said Kgomotso Christopher, chairperson of the Naledis. “We are seeing some really amazing, ground-breaking and uniquely South African work across all genres, which is being watched by an increasingly diverse and emerging theatre audience. What is heartening to see is that whilst the traditional theatre audiences may be diminishing in some areas, we are seeing a growing and very discerning young audience enjoying live theatre, and this is what will keep theatre alive in South Africa.”

Watch the full awards show HERE.

Picture: Facebook / Marc Lottering

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