Platteland Preview

At the heart of this annual fest you’ll find artists taking their productions to the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown. We invite them to showcase their work here en route as a final rehearsal and the Platteland Preview is the result: a feast of drama, music, comedy, dance, poetry and visual art. Welcome!

Coming for the 'propvol' festival: Amanda Fitschen

While the festival committee adds finishing touches to the performance venues, our out of town audiences are starting their trek to Smithfield. One of the first to arrive will be Amanda Fitschen, economist from Pretoria, who gets in on Thursday afternoon, determined to beat the rush. She bought a house in Smithfield some years ago, "because it's so peaceful and safe; maybe I will even more there permanently at some stage." Amanda was one of the stalwarts who came to the very first festival. "I thoroughly enjoyed it and now it's an annual on my calender." This year...Read more

Making an entrance

Drive into Smithfield from Bloemfontein and you'll know something colourful is going on. On the island at the entrance to town you'll find a large poster, painted by local artists and art students, reminding everyone that the Platteland Preview festival starts on Friday 26 June and lasts all weekend. The Red Barn , behind the island, is the home of the festival, and it welcomes festival-goers with bright red bunting, while two large wire windmills reflect the Preview's logo. And if you walk or drive through town you will notice how random trees are suddenly swaddled with orange...Read more

Local gallery hosts major exhibition over the festival

Both Koos Bronkhorst and Willem Pretorius are highly skilled, masters of brush, oil and canvas. The work they will bring to the Fresh Paint Gallery over the festival weekend shows off their skill,capturing light and image in a style that is uniquely theirs - stunning landscapes, moody skies, characteristic old houses and buildings, portraits. Koos Bronkhorst hails from Pretoria and his style and work is reminiscent of the great classical masters, names like Turner, Rembrandt, Baines and de Jongh come easily to mind. He has exhibited and sold work both locally and internationally over a career...Read more

Get your tickets with your bread and milk!

Want to be prepared? Get your festival tickets before the last minute rush? - Those fabulously helpful people at Wilgers and Saamkom are selling tickets for the Platteland Preview festival again this year, so you can stop in there to shop the fest at the same time as you get your bread and milk. They have full copies of the programme ready at hand to help you make your choices. Plus you can check out the intriguing posters for the festival shows put up on their windows. Thanks to Saamkom (Zandre Schuster is pictured with a fistful of tickets) and to Wilgers (Ria Potgieter and Magda Madden...Read more

Programmed for success

THE long-awaited programme booklets for the 2015 Platteland Preview festival have landed in Smithfield. Pieter Swanepoel (pictured with his mother Irene Swanepoel, director of the 2015 festival) collected them in Bloemfontein at the weekend, and they are now being distributed to key points in town. Designed by long-standing festival friend Crystelle Wilson of Durban, the programme will be available to show-goers and will be a useful, long-lasting momento of the Preview and of their visit to our dorp. It includes info about all the shows as well as a map showing points of interest for visitors...Read more

Festival tickets for out-of-towners

WANT to pre-book tickets for the Platteland Preview festival but you're from out of town? No problem. Festival comittee member, Suzelle Vorster, will gladly help make sure you have tickets for all the shows you'd like to see. Suzelle, seen above, with tickets and the cash box she'd like you to help fill, says anyone from out of town who would like to pre-book tickets should contact her on or, during office hours ONLY, on 082 412 0144 Please make sure that before you contact her you download the programme from this site and select the shows you'd like to see...Read more

District municipality wants to get involved

Official support for the Platteland Preview is spreading: now the Xhariep district municipality also wants to get involved. Tourism official Kele Molatedi recently had talks with members of the festival committee to explore how the Preview and the district municipality can benefit each other. Kele undertook to ensure that the festival is given a letter of support from the Xhariep municipality and this will be inserted as a flyer into the festival programme booklet. She also has plans to bring crafters, supported by Xhariep, to sell their products over the festival weekend. We welcome the...Read more

Festival committee in action

Hard-working Platteland Preview committee members have been fine-tuning their preparations for the third annual arts fest taking place in Smithfield 26 - 28 June. Chairs, venues, lights and sound, opening night arrangements, accommodation for performers, programmes - these guys are sorting it all out. Our town welcomes a specially invited group of actors, dancers, musicians and visual artists over that weekend, to give us a taste of what audiences will be enjoying at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown. Complete programme details coming soon ...Read more


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