Theatre news: Acclaimed production of Shirley Valentine will be on the boards at Theatre on the Bay in Camps Bay from August 3-13, 2022

What: Shirley Valentine by Willy Russell
Where: Theatre on The Bay, Cape Town
When:  August 3-13, 2022
Tickets: R160 – R220
Booking link:
Theatre box office: (021) 438 3300Performer: Natasha Sutherland
Director: Gina Schmukler
Set design: Nadine Minaar
Lighting design: Oliver Hauser
Age restriction: PG (contains adult themes)
Producer: VR Theatrical e-mail    

I saw VR Theatrical’s staging of Willy Russell’s Shirley Valentine, in March this year (2022) at Theatre on The Bay, Cape Town and was bowled over. I raved in my review: Natasha Sutherland brings spark and a fresh take to this iconic play. Shirley may be “bored” and “trapped in a stale, loveless marriage” but Sutherland’s Shirley is zesty and spunky. Nothing about her Shirley, is ‘stale’. The design is stylish and hipster chic. When I saw this production, it sold out. Luckily it is back, for another season. You may think that you have seen this play before, but you have not seen Natasha Sutherland, transporting Shirley into another zone. It’s relevant, entertaining and all-round fabulous theatre. Do not miss. Info as supplied:

Willie Russel’s iconic play, SHIRLEY VALENTINE is back on the boards at Theatre on the Bay, due to overwhelming demand after a sold out season in February 2022.

Some of you will remember her.  Willy Russell’s heroine of the 80s.  She played the West End and Broadway, won numerous accolades and was celebrated in film. Her name was Shirley Valentine, before she became Shirley Bradshaw, a middle aged woman, lost in her role as mother to two grown children, and wife to a husband in a somewhat stale marriage. When a friend offers her a trip to Greece, a long forgotten exuberance begins to bubble up in her.  Shirley’s journey is a celebration of many a contemporary woman, balancing motherhood, marriage and self-actualisation.  Shirley Bradshaw is the ‘original gangster’ of self-care and self-love – a beacon of empowerment.  Long before we had hashtags, we had Shirley. 

“We believe that what Shirley has to say is important.  And it is more relevant than ever, and clearly resonating with audiences after Covid.” says Jaco van Rensburg from VR Theatrical.  “After our initial short season sold out completely in Johannesburg we had no choice but to bring Ms. Valentine back.  We are delighted to work with Natasha Sutherland again who bent her schedule to accommodate our return season.”

The play garnered unanimous critical praise for director Gina Shmukler who gave Shirley a new, fresh look which drew in a new generation of women.  Not that this play is only for the ladies.  Said one husband:  “I learned a thing or two and wish that I was as brave as Shirley.  More husbands should see this play.  After 28 years of marriage it made me understand my wife a lot better.”

Shirley Valentine will be on the boards at Theatre on the Bay in Camps Bay from August 3 – 13.  Performances from Mondays to Saturdays.  See Computicket for performance times. Ticket Prices range from R160 – R220 and are available through Computicket or at the theatre box office on (021) 438 3300. Parental Guidance is advised as the play deals with grown-up themes. The duration of the play is 110min inclusive of a 20 min interval.

VR Theatrical on Social Media

VR Theatrical

Twitter: http://@VRTheatrical
Website :


VR THEATRICAL burst onto the theatrical scene in 2016 with the smash hit musical I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change.  In the next 3 years they produced a string of SA premieres of existing Broadway material including Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Avenue Q, Rock of Ages, and staged some original adaptations, including Peter and the Wolf, a musical adaptation of The Little Prince and Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.  Their smash hit original production Here’s To You – The Simon & Garfunkel Songbook was last seen at Theatre on the Bay prior to the Pandemic.

The VRT Team is proud to be able to add SHIRLEY VALENTINE to their producing credits and to be working alongside Gina Shmukler and Natasha Sutherland.    

✳ Images of Natasha Sutherland in Shirley Valentine -supplied.

On her rock. Natasha Sutherland in VR Theatrical’s sparkling, fresh production of Shirley Valentine by Willy Russell. Supplied.
Designing Shirley: The staging of Shirley Valentine, by VR Theatrical (South Africa), starring Natasha Sutherland, is stylish and contemporary, with set design by Nadine Minaar and lighting design by Oliver Hauser. Supplied.

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