Loving the Joburg nightlife, baby! Try these alternative entertainment spots

Posted by Anita Froneman on 2 February 2022

Out exploring at night, Ryan Enslin finds an interesting array of entertainment options to shake up your social life a bit.

As we ease back into some semblance of normality, thanks to managing COVID-19 more effectively, entertainment options are once again becoming a thing here in Joburg. Yay for that. In fact, it seems the nightlife options have undergone somewhat of a rehash during the lockdown, for the better.

If you’re tired of the same old ‘dinner and a movie’, here are some fun alternative entertainment options to try.

POPArt Live Improv Nights

Picture: Ryan Enslin

Imagine a theatre in which you, as an audience member, are invited to throw out random words and themes. Yip, this is what POPArt founder, Hayleigh Evans, guides you through as your evening unfolds. Without giving too much away (you’ll thank me when you visit the show) various themed skits are announced and the audience provides the material to the actors to, well, improvise.

Your performers are the POPArt Improv ensemble, many of whom have been performing together since 2010. And this shows in the highly creative theatrics that play out before your eyes. Like Three-Headed-Director in which three randomly chosen actors must give a single, synchronised answer to questions put to them about a make-believe movie just released, in line with the audience suggestions.

Mind blowing stuff I tell you! I was captivated by the performance being crafted on the go by these multi-talented actors. That and I kept throwing out Transformers as my suggestion, not quite sure why. I was probably caught up in the rapture of it all.

Catch the POPArt Live Improv Nights monthly at the Bioscope Independent Cinema, at the 44 Stanley Avenue Precinct, Milpark.


Picture: Pexels

Who doesn’t love to paint? A time to unleash that creative side which is all too often kept in check by the realities of day-to-day life. Does your skillset only extend to household furniture, or that piece you once attempted back in your school days? Don’t stress, PaintNite throws in some wine and good music, you and a few friends provide great company, and bam you’re in that special, creative space.

The evening is hosted by a local artist who takes you through a canvas to be painted, from the background to the foreground, ending off with the detail work. They break down the steps so there’s no need to feel intimidated. And there’s wine.

Events are hosted across Joburg and it’s advisable to make your selection based on the canvas that interests you, rather than the venue. In Real Life events still not your thing? They also have a selection of virtual events, with the goodies you need delivered straight to your door beforehand. Crank up that Zoom connection baby, it’s time to get creative!

The Blu Piano Social Club

Picture: The Blu Piano Social Club

Hosted on the third Thursday of the month at Peachy, also in the 44 Stanley Precinct, the Blu Piano Social Club (yes there is a dinkum blue piano on site) sees one accompanist and eight signers putting on a lively, and oftentimes sing-a-long (when appropriate), performance. Each singer selects a song of their choice and the result is a wonderfully varied evening of entertainment.

Peachy is fairly new to the Joburg scene, taking the space once occupied by the Stanley Beer Yard, serving modern street food. This quirky spot won the Ethnic Restaurant of the Year award at the third annual luxe Restaurant Awards. There is no cover charge for the Blu Piano Social Club, but booking is most definitely essential to ensure you and your merry mates enjoy a prime location from which to enjoy the musical merriment.

Isn’t it wonderful to be able to take in live performances once again!

Get Night Life-ing

And there you have a wonderful assortment of entertainment ideas for the weekend. Now is the time to go out and explore the heightened sense of performance, incubated in Joburg’s talented performers during the lockdown, or discover the performer in yourself.

Read more about Ryan’s adventures here.


Raise your glass to the lesser-known watering holes of Joburg


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