Liewe Heksie

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Liewe Heksie
Format Children's television series
Created by Verna Vels
Based on Radio stories by Verna Vels
Directed by Louise Smit
Dalene Kotzé
Opening theme "Hulle noem haar Liewe Heksie"
Country of origin South Africa South Africa
Original language(s) Afrikaans
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 52
Production company(s) SABC
Broadcast
Original channel SABC TV1

Liewe Heksie (Afrikaans for "Beloved Little Witch") is an Afrikaans work of fiction created by children's book author Verna Vels in 1961. It centres around Liewe Heksie, a rather incompetent and forgetful witch, who lives with her friends the elves in Blommeland and whose foolishness and lack of magic skills leads to many funny situations. The Liewe Heksie series started off as radio stories, followed by books and stories on vinyl record. It was later, in 1981, made into a popular Afrikaans language children's television programme, directed by well-known children's programme writer and director Louise Smit.

Storyline[edit]

Livinia,[1] or ‘Liewe Heksie’ as she is referred to by her friends, is the kind-hearted yet not very bright witch of Blommeland (“Flower Land”). Heksie cannot really do magic, but has a magic horse named Griet whom she can conjure up by saying his name. But, she can never remember it and only ever summons him by accident when she calls out “Oh Griet!” in panic. Her best friends are Blommie Kabouter (“kabouter” meaning elf or sprite), her kitten Mattewis and the stylish city cat Karel Kat, who rides a fancy car and owns a helicopter. She also loves playing with Klein Kwaaitjie Kabouter (“little angry elf”), the baby brother of the bad-tempered Kwaaitjie Kabouter. The ruler of Blommeland is the strict but kind Koning Rosekrans (“King Rose Wreath”), who is very fond of Heksie but gets frustrated with her inability to do magic and her repeatedly getting his name wrong. The source of Blommeland’s floral beauty is the strictly guarded Silwerroos (“Silver Rose”) which is coveted by the Gifappeltjies (“little poisoned apples”) and their evil witch the Geelheks (“yellow witch”). They frequently send two ‘kabouters’, Kerrie (“curry”) and Borrie (“turmeric”), to steal the rose to brighten up dry, barren Gifappeltjieland. Should they succeed, all the flowers in Blommeland would die and their land would become barren like Gifappeltjieland. However, on each of these occasions, Liewe Heksie manages to save the day, albeit accidentally, and is hailed a heroine. Sometimes the Feekoningin ("Fairy Queen") intervenes, and lets Heksie believe that she has done some real magic.

Stories[edit]

Series 1[edit]

  • Liewe Heksie en die Silwerroos (Liewe Heksie and the Silver Rose)
  • Liewe Heksie se Sterretjieskombuis (Liewe Heksie's Star-filled Kitchen)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Koekoekie (Liewe Heksie and the Cuckoo-clock)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Tent (Liewe Heksie and the Tent)
  • Hoe Mattewis by Heksie kom Woon het (How Mattewis came to live with Heksie)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Alpeviooltjies (Liewe Heksie and the Cyclamens)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Forelle (Liewe Heksie and the Trout)
  • Hoe Liewe Heksie Koning Rosekrans gesond gemaak het (How Liewe Heksie helped the King get better)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Helikopter (Liewe Heksie and the Helicopter)
  • Liewe Heksie op die Maan (Liewe Heksie on the Moon)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Sangeres (Liewe Heksie and the Singer)
  • Liewe Heksie die Babawagter (Liewe Heksie the Babysitter)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Diewe (Liewe Heksie and the Thieves)
  • Mattewis op die Windpomp (Mattewis on the Windmill)
  • Liewe Heksie in Gifappeltjieland
  • Liewe Heksie en die Klompe (Liewe Heksie and the Clogs)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Donkie (Liewe Heksie and the Donkey)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Sirkus (Liewe Heksie and the Circus)
  • Liewe Heksie gaan Skool toe (Liewe Heksie goes to School)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Motor (Liewe Heksie and the Car)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Klip met Voete (Liewe Heksie and the Rock with Feet)
  • Liewe Heksie kry 'n Verjaarsdag (Liewe Heksie has a Birthday)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Slee (Liewe Heksie and the Sleigh)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Toorwoorde (Liewe Heksie and the Magic Words)
  • Inbrekers in Blommeland (Burglars in Blommeland)
  • Liewe Heksie hou Partytjie (Liewe Heksie throws a Party)

Series 2[edit]

  • Liewe Heksie en die Orkes (Liewe Heksie and the Orchestra)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Beer (Liewe Heksie and the Bear)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Pampoene (Liewe Heksie and the Pumpkins)
  • Liewe Heksie end die Dolfyn (Liewe Heksie and the Dolphin)
  • Liewe Heksie die Akrise (Liewe Heksie the Actress)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Verrassing (Liewe Heksie and the Surprise)
  • Liewe Heksie Leer Bestuur (Liewe Heksie Learns to Drive)
  • Liewe Heksie op die Strand (Liewe Heksie on the Beach)
  • Piekniek in Blommeland (Picnic in Blommeland)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Krisis (Liewe Heksie and the Crisis)
  • Liewe Heksie in die Sop (Liewe Heksie in Trouble)
  • Liewe Heksie maak 'n Plan (Liewe Heksie makes a Plan)
  • Liewe Heksie se Strykdag (Liewe Heksie's Ironing Day)
  • Liewe Heksie vertel 'n Storie (Liewe Heksie tells a Story)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Voëlnes (Liewe Heksie and the Bird's Nest)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Bal (Liewe Heksie and the Ball)
  • Liewe Heksie hou Wag (Liewe Heksie keeps Watch)
  • Liewe Heksie hou Modeparade (Liewe Heksie has a Fashion Show)
  • Liewe Heksie speel Wegkruipertjie (Liewe Heksie plays Hide-and-seek)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Vis Met Voete (Liewe Heksie and the Fish with Feet)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Balonne (Liewe Heksie and the Balloons)
  • Die Voëlverskrikker (The Scarecrow)
  • Die Wekker (The Alarm-clock)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Sterretjieskombuis (Liewe Heksie and the Star-filled Kitchen)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Geel Motor (Liewe Heksie and the Yellow Car)
  • Liewe Heksie die Heldin (Liewe Heksie the Heroine)

Published books[edit]

The first two books were illustrated by Dorothy Hill, the third by Nikki Jones and the last two by Piet Grobler.

  • Die Groot Liewe Heksie-storieboek, 1983 (The Big Liewe Heksie Storybook)
  • Lekker Liewe Heksie Stories, 1983 (Nice Liewe Heksie Stories)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Rugbywedstryd, 1988 (Liewe Heksie and the Rugby Tournament)
  • Liewe Heksie en die Rekenaar, 1999 (Liewe Heksie and the Computer)
  • Die Liewe Heksie Omnibus, 2002 (The Liewe Heksie Omnibus)

Radio and television[edit]

In both the radio and TV versions, Vels herself provided the voice of Liewe Heksie. Many of the recorded Liewe Heksie stories also appeared on records and more recently CDs.

Puppets[edit]

Puppets, made by a modelmaking team headed by Rod Campbell, were used to bring the Liewe Heksie characters to life for their television debut in 1981. Ronel Botha designed the characters out of plasticine. The puppets were 22 centimetres in size. The flexible latex faces could move, the eyes could blink and a special mechanism inserted into the Liewe Heksie puppet made her cry, and her hat could move over her eyes when she was shy. A separate marionette version of Liewe Heksie was used when she flew on her broom. Due to the deterioration of the latex very few, if any, of these puppets exist today and sadly the original plasticine masters and moulds were damaged.

Parodies[edit]

The Liewe Heksie series was parodied on local comedian Casper de Vries's show Die Casper Rasper Show, with Verna Vels as a guest on the show. The sketch uses foul language, with costumes that don't really resemble the shows outfits. It suggests that Blommie and Koning Rosekrans are gay, and that Liewe Heksie has an affair with a Gifappel. Many references to the show's history are also mentioned.

Revival[edit]

There were plans for the show to be redone in 3D-CGI animation and be released in 26 episodes of 11 minutes each in 2007. It was to be animated by Anamazing Workshop, and produced by Meerkat Media, but economic conditions were poor and the project was scrapped.

References[edit]