Let’s see … How do you progress from 37 shows in a half a year in 2008 to 76 in the same amount number of months in 2018? How many shows has Lunchbox actually staged in the past 10 years? What has the impact been on the children of South Africa and those involved?
Whether you know it or not you have supported us in some way because our shows filters from our supporters and audience into your home. And we exist because of you … Ubuntu!
When founder, Stuart Palmer left Cape Town to set up Lunchbox Theatre in Plettenberg in 2008, he had no idea how he was going to fulfill his dream of educating the children in the region about social and environmental issues that would become significantly more important with each passing year.
He had no idea who he was going to be working with or how he would attract funding. He had no idea what shows they would produce. He did not know what the impact would be on young lives he would influence. He could not anticipate how much growth would be afforded his troupe. He probably never imagined that Lunchbox Theatre would take him and his faithful team into the deepest rural areas of the South Western and Eastern Cape of South Africa, into Africa and Europe. He had no concept of the following he would attract from members of the public and like-minded organisations.
All he knew was that he experienced great joy when using his acting abilities to change the world, one child at a time. This thrill inspires him to always give his absolute best in every facet of a live theatre organisation to ensure that the message is conveyed clearly, and that change will take place.
His example filters down to his followers and today, to his credit, most of Stuart’s original team are still with him. Under his guidance, they have learnt enormous amounts in the various fields of life skills, self-development, management, acting, scriptwriting, directing and producing.
The successes are numerous so let’s just use the example of the launch of Lunchbox Theatre’s latest show, called Dream. It premieres at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown in June 2018. This is the 11th Show which Lunchbox Theatre’s has produced. It debuted in Plettenberg Bay to a full house of wonderful Lunchbox Theatre enthusiasts. Each show takes enormous effort and attention to detail to put together and stage, to perfection. Hundreds of comments from teachers and, more lately, Learners pays tribute to this fact.
Dream was written by our very own Amanda Valela who has embraced every opportunity afforded to her by funding from Assitej South Africa and National Lotteries Commission, to the fullest. In May 2014 she was chosen to represent the young, black and female South African directors at the Ideas to Action Program, followed by the Inspiring a Generation Program in Sweden. She also co-directed iLifa, The Inheritance which was inspired by the 40th Anniversary of the National Arts Festival and the 20th Anniversary of our democratic constitution in 2015. It was made possible by funding from the National Lottery Distribution Trust. It debuted at the HIFA Festival in Zimbabwe in May 2015. In July 2015 Lunchbox Theatre made it possible for this local, talented lady to travel to Austria, as part of the “Next Generation Program” at the SHARXPIR Festival.
At the time of writing, Lunchbox Theatre have staged 736 shows and influenced nearly 145 000 children for the greater good. They have received funding support from many government and private institutions to make this possible and they are grateful to them all.
The likeminded volunteers of the Orca Foundation have funded a meaningful number of 120 shows which have educated 26 500 children over the past 10 years. The Eden to Addo Initiative is also greatly appreciated to another patron, the amazing Eden to Addo Corridor Initiative as they commissioned The Great Eden to Addo Adventure.
The biggest gift Lunchbox has received is the support from ordinary and often extraordinary supporters. Like earlier this year when 9 guys rode the Cape Cycle Tour and raised R40 000 for Lunchbox Theatre which means that 8 shows can educate at least 6 000 more children!
If you are the kind of person who likes to impact the world positively and see a return on your investment, maybe you could consider giving Lunchbox a 10th Birthday present? A small amount can make a huge difference as you will see if you click onto our funky WEBSITE
Alternatively, you can create a win-win situation by ordering our amazing Ultimate Bird Life Series as a gift for someone you love. This gesture has the added benefit of gifting Lunchbox Theatre so that our actors can be employed to teach amazing stuff to more children. See the great deal here.