Sir Roel Twijnstra (1954)

Roel Twijnstra is a theatre director, producer, a lecturer and writer originally from the Netherlands. He started his career in 1981 after internships with Peter Brook (France), Peter Stein (Berlin) and Viola Spolin (Hollywood).

He produced more then 100 theatre productions, In the Netherlands, US, Russia, Nepal, and different African countries like Morocco, Guinee, Benin and Uganda. Since 1999 he directed national and international theatre shows in South Africa. For theatres and ferstivals like NAF, KKNK, PACOFS, Soweto theatre and Artscape.

He is the founder and director of TWIST projects an organization that is focusing on the development of the theatre industry in KZN, an organization he manages together with Emma Durden.

He is the author of 6 books about theatre and film. The last three published in South Africa together with co-author Emma Durden; one on Theatre directing, one on Producing for theatre and one on Acting for Stage and Screen in South Africa. He also wrote a novel in 2012 ” Een Zulu op mijn bank” that was translated in English ” Zulu crush”.

Currently he is the Head of Live Performance at AFDA Durban and focusing on the development of a South African screen acting methodology in collaboration with the Film and TV Industry in KZN.

He is based in Durban since 2011, married with actress, singer, playwright and writer Philisiwe Twijnstra and the proud father of their daughter Nondalo Neeltje Twijnstra, Anne Twijnstra and Rens Twijnstra-Ayang.

He was knighted by the King of the Netherlands in 2017 and given the Royal Dutch order “ Knight of Oranje Nassau” for the cultural exchange between South Africa and the Netherlands and his artistic excellence.

In 2023 Roel and his familiy re-migrated back to the Netherlands.

What I do

  • Actor                   Film and TV

Actors-coach/Lecturer Camera-acting, character preparation and on-set coaching

Where did I lecture and with who did I work as a coach: TWIST projects, Dragon Productions, Sorana pictures, DUT, AFDA South Africa, Film school Barendrecht.

Writer Book publications, story crafting and doctoring

Other covers from the old site, new cover camera-acteren will come soon, would be nice to have a link to amazon (English e book versions) and IT&FB site.

Clients for story crafting and doctoring:
TWIST Projects, Dragon Productions, Sorana pictures, Het Waterhuis, Siberia, AFDA South Africa.



Theatre Directing in South Africa

Skills and Inspirations (Performing arts in South Africa Book 1)

“ Theatre directing in South Africa: Skills and inspirations” is a user-friendly introduction to the role of the theatre director and the concept of stage-craft presented in a way that is easy to understand for those who are stepping into the role of director for the first time, or those who feel that they need a refresher course and new inspirations. The book includes interviews with ten contemporary South African directors, exploring their journeys into theatre and how they came to find themselves in the director’s chair.
Interviewed South African directors include Prince Lamla, Neil Coppen, Zinzi Princess Mhlongo, Greg Homann, Paul Grootboom, Pusetso Thibedi, Lara Foot, Amy Jephta, Bheki Mkhwane and Brett Bailey.”

Theatre Production in South Africa

Skills and Inspirations (Performing Arts in South Africa Book 2)

“Theatre Production in South Africa: Skills and inspirations” is a user-friendly introduction to the role of the theatre producer, and explores the skills needed to bring a production from an idea to an audience. The book includes interviews with contemporary South African theatre producers, who tell of their own journey into producing, and give tips for emerging producers.
Interviewed South African producers include Nobulali Dlangazele, Warona Seane, Julian Seleke Moloto, Steven Stead, Kosie Smit and many more. The environment around the producers is also explored, including interviews with festival directors, funders, stage managers and publicist Bridget van Oerle. “

Acting in South Africa

Skills and Inspirations (Performing Arts in South Africa Book 3)

“Acting in South Africa: Skills and inspirations” is a user-friendly introduction to acting for both stage and screen. The book includes interviews with actors, directors, coaches, agents and producers, who talk about their own experiences and share tips for making it as an actor in South Africa. Interviewed actors include Andrew Buckland, David Dennis, Dawn Thandeka King, Dr Jerry Mofokeng and many others who have made a name for themselves in television, film or on stage in South Africa and beyond. “