Q&A #HeTwo: Pieter Dirk Uys Exposed

The Hexagon, Pmb: 14 – 16 Nov
Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre, Dbn: 19 – 24 Nov
Multi– award winning, multifaceted South African performer, author, satirist and social activist, Pieter Dirk Uys returns to KZN to perform in his latest show, #HeTwo: Evita Exposed.
Pieter Dirk Uys will deliver his new show #HeTwo: Evita Exposed.in Durban at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre at the Howard College UKZN campus from the 19 – 24 November.
We have had the wonderful opportunity of interviewing Pieter Dirk Uys to get some insight into his new show as well as some of his views about South Africa ..
Q: For those Durbanites who don’t know who you are, how would you best describe yourself and what you do?
PDU: I should be answering that in Zulu, but here goes in the colonialist lingo: I am 74 going on 12 and use humour to confront fear and fakeness in news, views and opinions. I have been on stage since 1969 performing, writing plays, presenting revues and hiding under the brightly-coloured umbrella called satire. I am a terminal optimist and am currently planning into 2023.
Q: Tell us a bit more about #HeTwo: Evita Exposed.without giving away too much?
PDU: I have always joked that Evita Bezuidenhout and I would never meet face to face. I was wrong. In this outing she confronts me for my impersonations of her since 1981. In this age of #MeToo, Tannie Evita feels affronted, humiliated and assaulted by a man dressed up as her. Sies, she says.
Q:What were the main inspirations behind #HeTwo: Evita Exposed.
PDU: The show is inspired by the fact that just because she doesn’t exist, doesn’t mean she’s not real. She proves it on screen in her meetings with some very politicians: Nelson Mandela, Pik Botha, the Speaker of Parliament, Desmond Tutu and a cluster of familiar icons and aikonas.
Q:What have some of your favorite moments been, this far?
PDU: For the first time in decades I leave the stage during the show because Tannie Evita is on the screen. Then I have a chance to bring onto the stage characters associated with our politics: like PW Botha, Pik Botha, my Jewish kugel Nowell Fine and of course Evita herself. In Johannesburg after a hilarious screening of Evita and Pik Botha together, I come on as a character. A tannie in the front row groaned: ‘Ag no, not him again!’ (Ag nee, dis alweer hy!)’
Q: You have achieved so much up till this point, what is your next move?
PDU: Preparing for tonight’s show. There used to be 365 days in my year. Now there are only two: today and tomorrow.
Q: Why did you choose this path, or did it choose you?
PDU: The theatre makes the choices. It probably saw me and said: Gotcha! Come. Life imprisonment without parole. I also must pay tribute to the best scriptwriters in the world who gave me more material that I just couldn’t have made up: the National Party regime 1948-1994 and, of course, today’s Rainbow gangbang of comrades, cadres, cabinet ministers and crooks.
Q: You have vast knowledge of South Africa, lately we have been in a state of turmoil, sadness, anger and much more. What is it that you believe South Africa needs most right now?
PDU: We need to take a deep breath and rethink our priorities as citizens. I don’t think things will get better; they must just not get worse. Politics is here today and gone tonight. Politicians really are past their sell-by dates. It’s time make communities the jewel in the crown of democracy. So get out there and clean up the mess in your neighbourhood, assist the people round you, celebrate the talent in your family and keep a sense of humour, knowing that if the people lead, the government will follow.
Q: On a lighter note, if you had three wishes granted to you by a genie what would you wish for (you can’t wish for more wishes)?
PDU: 1. Hi Genie, go away! 2. Hi Eskom, please stay. 3. Can I keep Number 3 for a rainy day?
Q: South Africa is full of potential; you’ve travelled all over South Africa and the world, what is one of the most special things about Durban?
PDU: It’s not Pretoria or Bloemfontein! I have met some wonderful Zulu people who have helped me appreciate the culture of KZN. I also enjoy the held breath of scandal that hovers around the colonialist history of the city. And to be very unoriginal: moerse lekker curries!
Q: Of all the places you’ve visited, which of them have had the best curry (there should only be one answer)?
PDU: I would never dare mention their name and so be thrown out of the other six places I enjoy visiting.
Q: What is your most valuable piece of advice that you would give to the average Durbanite?
PDU: Moenie pêniek nie; alles sal regkom! (Don’t panic. Everything will come right!)

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