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Our Story

‘Our theatre is the culmination of a lifelong dream’

Driven by their burning passion for the theatre and the realisation of the need for a smaller intimate theatre as part of the vibrant Stellenbosch arts scene, Ingrid Howard and Hano Smit created a brand-new theatre in a record time of six weeks to be ready for the grand opening on the 2nd of March 2015. As a self-funded independent company, the Drostdy Theatre has since showcased a variety of English, Afrikaans and international talent, and has created and hosted countless recordings, shows, concerts and workshops.


The majestic Victorian building - now home to the Drostdy Theatre - on the corner of Alexander & Bird Streets in the historic heart of Stellenbosch - used to be a hotel, a home for the aged, and an office space. The Victorian era (1837 –

1901) saw the middle class aspiring to join the ranks of the nobility. People felt that acting “properly” according to the conventions and values of the time was an important step in that direction. The Drostdy Theatre strives to offer all our guests “proper” hospitality and a “stylish” theatre. On entering the building, like many an intrigued visitor before, one is charmed by the magnificent ambience of the old worn stairs leading up to the mysterious world of movement, words and sound. A red carpet awaits you upstairs. This 2 400-year-old tradition dates back to a performance of the classical Greek tragedy, Agamemnon, where the king was brutally murdered on a red carpet. This inspired one of the oldest theatrical traditions that we still celebrate today, where only
the most important members of society were allowed to “walk the red carpet”. The carpet leads you to a warm and friendly foyer.


And when the doors to the auditorium finally open and the house-lights go down, you escape into a magic world of life and make-believe.

Meet The Team

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Ingrid Howard

CEO / Proprietor

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Hano Smit

Technical Director

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Ané van den Berg

Theatre Operational Manager

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