A crop of new leaders has been appointed at Afda's three campuses, headed by Malcolm Purkey, who is the new dean designate in Joburg. Afda executives have announced the appointment of senior staff in key positions at the institution's campuses - in Joburg, Cape Town and Durban.


Afda executives have announced the appointment of senior staff in key positions at the institution's three campuses – in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban.

As part of its consistent drive to provide a high quality and relevant education for young aspiring filmmakers, TV producers and performers, Afda has appointed a number of prominent academics and practitioners to top posts within these campuses, says the executive.

Malcolm Purkey, the artistic director of the Market Theatre, has been appointed the dean designate of the Afda campus in Johannesburg. Purkey will continue in his role at the Market, on a revised contract, for the foreseeable future. He is joined in Joburg by respected award-winning theatre director Greg Homann as the head of the Performance School and award-wining filmmaker Brent Quinn as the head of the Film School.

Purkey is an award-winning theatre director and playwright. Among others, he has won the English Academy Award; multiple Vita Awards, including Best New South African Play for Love, Crime and Johannesburg; and most recently a Fleur du Cap for Best Director for the Cape Town production of The Girl in the Yellow Dress. He is also a screenplay writer, teacher and Fulbright Scholar, and a founder member and director of Junction Avenue Theatre Company, one of South Africa's leading workshop theatre companies.

"I am really proud to be associated with Afda, and am excited about moving back into the world of academia and professional studies, and look forward to working with a dynamic and enthusiastic team," says Purkey.

Quinn describes himself as a South African storyteller. He has over 25 years' of experience working in film, television, film training and advocacy media. His producing and screenwriting work has garnered about 60 global recognitions. He currently consults on various television and feature film projects.

Until recently, Homann headed the writing and directing programmes in the dramatic arts department at the Wits School of the Arts. He has an Masters with distinction in text and performance studies from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (Rada) and King's College London. As a theatre director, actor, academic and occasional writer he has worked on a broad range of productions and projects as both a performer and director.

In Cape Town, Roy Zeitsky, the producer, director of photography and photographer, has been appointed head of the Film School; with TV presenter, producer and news editor Megan Rusi, as head of the TV School; and well-known academic and director Christopher John as head of the Performance School.

Filmmaker Richard Green has been appointed head of the Film School in Durban. Award-winning actor/playwright and director Rajesh Gopie is the head of the Performance School, and Franco Human moves from the Cape Town campus where he was the deputy undergraduate course director and producing lecturer, to take up the position as Dean of School in Durban.

"Afda has always and wishes to continue to develop talent that is networked, skilled and enthusiastic about creating culturally relevant entertainment, producing products for local markets as well as global niche markets," says the institution's co-founder and chairman, Garth Holmes. "The ultimate axis on which this creativity sits is in the quality of academics and practitioners of the institution. We have therefore selected individuals for their experience in the entertainment industry as well as their academic and professional achievements."

Afda co-founder and chief executive Bata Passchier adds: "It's an exciting new era for us and we have restructured the schools' management in order to provide a relevant and fruitful education – one that is comparable and in some instances better than the top institutions in the world, and one that meets the challenges of a society that is changing and evolving at an exponential rate."

For more information, visit the Afda website.