Athol Fugard cold news 2011





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An archive of hot news from 2011


Master Harold in Indiana, USA

The University of Evansville Department of Theatre present “Master Harold” ... And the Boys  in the Shanklin Theatre, Indiana.  The director is John David Lutz.  It is on from 23 Sept- 2 Oct 2011.

"A luminous drama borne out of the racial divide in apartheid-era South Africa, this scintillating story is an enduring tale of love, loss, entitlement, and pride. Set against the simple backdrop of a rainy afternoon in a 1950s tearoom, a young white boy's mercurial feelings toward his parents are juxtaposed against the delicate bonds of his friendship with an older black man. This poignantly written play examines the insidious nature of deeply entrenched racism—proving even the most intimate connections can be destroyed in a heartbeat. Winner of the 1982 Drama Desk Award for Best Play, Athol Fugard's exploration of the primal ties that bind people together and tear them apart is told with both penetrating tension and wistful elegance. The emotion of its heartbreaking climax is sure to linger in the hearts and minds of audience members long after the play concludes."


Absa Fugard Festival

The 2011 Absa Fugard Festival will be held from 23-26 Sept 2011.  The annual Festival held in Nieu Bethesda, South Africa over the heritage weekend is the biggest Fugard celebration in the world.


Absa Fugard Festival: Boesman and Lena

Boesman and Lena

Stable Theatre is to present a schools production of Boesman and Lena.

"Athol Fugard’s powerful story set in apartheid South Africa. It deals with a coloured couple who have been uprooted from their shanty town home which has been bulldozed by the white authorities in order to drive them and other blacks and coloureds in the segregated settlement further away from their white neighbours.

Taking place in the course of a single evening, the play follows Boesman and Lena’s story as they traipse across the mudflats of the Swartkops River near Port Elizabeth, carrying all their belongings in bundles. As they find a desolate spot to rig up some shelter, they meet an old black man. Despite Boesman’s scorn, Lena invites him to sit by the fire …. but the man dies unexpectedly."

The Eager Artists’s production is directed by Siza Mthembu with Jessica Jamisson (Lena) and Musa Ntuli (Boesman).


Absa Fugard Festival: My Life Re-viewed

Fugard My Life Reviewed

"In 1994 Athol Fugard, with the help of Rebecca Waddell, created the workshop presentation, My Life. It told the story of five young South African women and their realities and aspirations.

Following Fugard’s template and work-process, Johan Esterhuizen and his team of five student actor’s from the University of Stellenbosch embark on their journey and paths of discovery in this new or, more correctly stated, “re-visited” version of the original Fugard play. The audience will share this journey and be drawn into the remarkable world of five very creative young students on the verge of moving from their relatively safe campus environment to meeting the challenges of a new South Africa. And the beauty of it is that all five have an array of performance talents that are sure to entertain, amuse and astound.

With Brenda Mhangwani,Theodora Lee, Kim Pietersen, Andrea Frankson, Sam Petersen. Directed by Johan Esterhuizen."


Absa Fugard Festival: The Captain's Tiger

The Captains Tiger

"The Captain`s Tiger deals with the young author (Athol Fugard) and the formative influences on him as a young writer setting out to make his mark. The play describes his adventures as a `captain`s tiger`, or assistant to the captain of a merchant vessel sailing the Pacific ocean. In his free time, he befriends Donkeyman, an illiterate machine room mechanic, who offers him quiet support and encouragement in his writing endeavours. He also finds his muse in the memory of his mother, who appears to him in dreamlike sequences throughout the play, thereby making this probably one of the most poetic of Fugard`s plays.

The play will be staged by Anex Theatre Production and will be directed by Margot Wood. The cast includes Dawie Fourie (as the Author), Benita Retief (his mother) and Shedrick Jacobs (Donkeyman)."


Absa Fugard Festival: Fugue'd


Inspired by Fugard’s reoccurring theme of disconnection, this production explores the pressures, the responsibilities and the aspirations of young people on the threshold of a changing future.  Fugue’d is a contemporary piece, drawing from the past to make sense of the future.  Directed by Cheri-Lee Blackie and presented by The Waterfront Theatre College.


Absa Fugard Festival: Lied van die Vallei
(Valley Song in Afrikaans)

Lied van die vallei

"Lied van die Vallei is die Afrikaanse vertaling van Valley Song, die eerste stuk wat Fugard geskryf het na die verkiesing in 1994. Soos verwag kan word het dit 'n ligter aanslag as baie van Fugard se voor ' 94 stukke en die liedjies in die stuk dra ook by tot 'n genotvolle toneelervaring.

Lied van die Vallei speel af in Nieu Bethesda en toneelgangers wat die dorpie ken, sal die verwysings na die bekende omgewing waardeer, bv. "Dis nou winter, 'n Sneeubergwinter!"; "So, Veronica, dit lyk of jou droomtyd in Martinstraat verby is, ne?" Selfs die karakters kan mense wees wat 'n mens ken!

Die stuk gaan oor drome, die genot van werk met die grond, pampoene, liedjies, geloof en dan die eeue oue konflik tussen die jonger geslag en die ouer "Buks" wat verkies dat dinge moet bly soos dit was.

Die rolle word vertolk deur plaaslike inwoners van Nieu Bethesda onder die regie van die briljante Kenyon, ook van Nieu Bethesda.

Die vertaler van die stuk, Idil Sheard, ook van Nieu Bethesda , het in 2004 die SAVI se eerste prys gekry vir hierdie Afrikaanse vertaling van Valley Song Vallei."


Absa Fugard Festival: Hallo en Koebaai
(Hello and Goodbye in Afrikaans)

Hallo en Koebaai

"In hierdie prikkelende teaterstuk, speel die storie af in n huis in Valleyweg en ondersoek die verhouding tussen 'n broer en suster, waar onderdrukte woede en angs, elkeen hul betekenlose lewens onderbreek. Albei moet vrede maak met die keuses wat hulle gemaak het in die lewe, en die manier waarop hulle beïnvloed is deur hul herinneringe, kinderjare, en hul dominante, gestremde vader.

Hester (Yvonne Batista) keer terug huistoe na 12 jaar; en in die verloop van die aand, konfronteer sy en haar broer Johnnie (Jacques Batista) hulle woede, vrese, haat en selfs die moontlikheid van hoop vir die toekoms.

Die regie deur Steven Bolhuis, knipoog vir die nostalgie van die sestigejare en minimale teater modernisme; wat beide in teenstelling is, en komplimenteer die emosionele intensiteit van die bestaanskrisis wat Hester en Johnny in die gesig staar.

Die bitter-soet universele temas van teenspoed, kwesbaarheid en disfunksionele gesinsdinamika; word binne die duidelik herkenbare plaaslike konteks verken."


Directing Fugard in Cape Town, South Africa

click for link

The Directors and Directing conference is hosted by the Gordon Institute for Performing and Creative Arts (GIPCA) from 29- 31 July 2011.  Click on the image for more details.

"The rise and fall and rise of the Director is almost a theatrical cliché. While emerging democracies favour multiple voices as opposed to singular interpretations, directors have re-emerged as powerful indicators and cultural barometers. The combination of directing with dance theatre, opera, puppets and visual theatre all make for rich deliberations."

The event includes an inventive exercise in determining the influence of directorial interpretation. Five directors (Fatima Dike, Aubrey Sekhabi, Sandra Temmingh, Jacqui Singer and Neil Coppen) will interpret and direct the same scene from Athol Fugard’s Boesman and Lena.


The Road to Mecca in Colorado, USA

click for link

Creede Repertory Theatre present The Road to Mecca in rep from 9 Jul- 22 Sept 2011.  Click on the image for more details.


Master Harold in Long Beach, USA

Master Harold... and the boys - click for link

Long Beach Playhouse Theatre in Long Beach, CA presents Master Harold and the Boys from 2- 30 Jul 2011.  Click on the image for details.

"...the Tony Award-winning play that looks at prejudice and how it can be passed from generation to generation".


Lifetime Achievement Honour

Athol Fugard is to receive a lifetime achievement honour at this year's Tony awards.  He will be recognised at the ceremony in New York on 12 June.


Hello and Goodbye in Namibia

99FM Playhouuse Theatre and Committed Artists of Namibia (CAN) present Hello and Goodbye.  The director is Frederick Brian Philander and the actors are Lynne Jacobs and Johnnie Smith.  It is on from 24- 25 Jun 2011.


Fugard film festival in South Africa

click for more details

The Fugard Theatre present a week of classic films based on Fugard’s works from 7-11 Jun 2011.  Click on the image for details.

The schedule is:

  • 7 Jun 2011: Boesman and Lena directed by Ross Devenish and starring Athol Fugard and Yvonne Bryceland (1974)

  • 8 Jun 2011: Hello and Goodbye directed by Ross Devenish and starring Athol Fugard and Yvonne Bryceland (1977)

  • 9 Jun 2011: Master Harold and the Boys directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg and starring Mathew Broderick, John Kani and Zakes Mokae (1985)

  • 10 Jun 2011: The Road to Mecca directed by Athol Fugard and Peter Goldsmid and starring Kathy Bates, Athol Fugard and Yvonne Bryceland (1992)

  • 11 Jun 2011: Tsotsi directed by Gavin Hood – 2006 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film


Absa Fugard Festival applications

Athol Fugard- click for link

The 2011 Absa Fugard Festival will be held from 23-26 Sept 2011 and the organizers are now awaiting applications.  Artists who want to be part of the 2011 Festival have until 15 Mar 2011 to submit their applications.  The annual Festival held in Nieu Bethesda, South Africa over the heritage weekend is the biggest Fugard celebration in the world.


Master Harold in South Africa

Master Harold - click for link

Rother Swain Drama Studio present Master Harold  from 1-3 Jul 2011 in Grahamstown, South Africe.  The director is Sharon Rother and the actors are Gift Buqa, Phambili Ngcayisa and Cameron Robertson.  Click on the image for details.


Sizwe Bansi in South Africa

Sizwe Bansi - click for link

The Market Theatre presents Sizwe Banzi is Dead from 21 Jun- 24 Jun 2011.  The director is Monageng Vice Motshabi and the actors are Arthur Molepo and Omphile Molusi.  Click on the image for more details.

"Motshabi’s interpretation of this timeless play puts an emphasis on the issue of identity which today remains relevant, much as it did many years ago. “The issue of survival portrayed in the play goes into matters of identity. Names are very important to black people. For Sizwe, he reflects on whether he will actually connect with his ancestors if he is now called something else. The play therefore attempts to explore the question ‘Is being a man connected to a name or a functional role a man has to take”, said Motshabi."


The Bird Watchers

Athol Fugard returns to the Fugard Theatre with a new play The Bird Watchers, produced and presented by the Fugard Theatre and Eric Abraham.  The cast include Sean Taylor and Dorothy Ann Gould.  It is on from 10 May to 4 Jun 2011.


My Children! My Africa! in Chattanooga, USA

My Children! My Africa! - click for link

Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga presents, My Children! My Africa! from 29 Apr- 15 May 2011 at the St. Andrew’s Center, Chattanooga.  The director is Brenda Schwab, stage manager Hannah Wilson, set designer Garry Lee Posey and costumes designer Sydney Hooper.  Click on the image for more information.


Master Harold film in New York

Master Harold and the Boys  Master Harold & and the Boys

The new film of 'Master Harold' and the boys will be shown at the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival in the Quad Cinema, New York on 4 May 2011.

The films is directed by Lonny Price.  Hally is played by Freddie Highmore and Sam by Ving Rhames, Willie by Patrick Mofokeng and Bully by Justin Stein.


Master Harold in Washington, DC USA

Master Harold... and the boys - click for link

Bob Bartlett directs Master Harold... and the Boys.  It is presented by the Quotidian Theatre Company in Washington, DC from 18 Mar- 17 Apr 2011.  The actors are Ben Davis, Jason B. McIntosh and Theodore M. Snead.  Click on the image for more details.


My Children! My Africa! in Pretoria, South Africa

My Children! My Africa! directed by Innocent Msiza and with Moagi Modise, Mkhuseli Mxakatho and Carly Bailey is on from 8-20 Mar 2011.  Click here for more details.

Dimetos in Decca, India

As part of the ‘Garma Garam Chai’ event in Decca, India there will be a reading of Dimetos. Described as "a bitter-sweet tragedy" it will be held on 19 Mar 2011 at Vibgyor, 71, Sona Towers, Miller’s Road.

Valley Song in Venice, USA

Valley Song plays at the Electic Lodge Theatre from 4- 20 Mar 2011.  The play is directed by Patrick Ssenjovu and presented by African Theatre company.  The actors are Charles Parnell, Gloria Huwiler and Paulo de Sousa (three actors?).

"Set in post apartheid South Africa, Athol Fugard’s compelling work is a soulful meditation on the country’s metamorphoses in the wake of the first democratic elections. A hauntingly beautiful play, Valley Song documents the evolving social landscape of South Africa, with a deep sensitivity to the day to day struggles and private dreams of its people."

It is at The Electric Lodge, Venice CA.


Fugard speaking in San Diego, USA

clcik for linl

Athol Fugard is the keynote speaker at the 2011 Peacemaker Awards in San Diego.  It is on 10 Mar 2011 at Hilton  Bayfront, San Diego, USA.  Click on the image for more details.


The Road to Mecca in Boston, USA

The Road to Mecca - click for link

The Boston Center for American Performance (BCAP) present The Road to Mecca from 16 Feb- 5 Mar 2011 at the Boston University Theatre. On 2 Mar 2011 there is a post-show discussion with members of the company.

The director is Judy Braha and the actors are Elaine Vaan Hogue (Miss Helen), Mark Cohen (Rev. Marius Byleveld) and Ali Kerestly (Elsa Barlow).  Scene design is by James Fluhr, costume design by Annie Woods, lighting by Aaron Sherkow, sound by Andrea Gordon.  The technical director is Loren Primeau, the stage manager is Leigh Robinette and the production manager is Roger Meeker.

Click on the image for more details.


Sizwe Bansi is Dead, South Africa

Sizwe Bansi is Dead - click for link

Omphile Molusi and Arthur Molepo star in Sizwe Bansi is Dead.  The director is Monageng Vice Motshabi.  It is on at The Market Theatre, Johannesburg, South Africa. 

"The play, set in Styles’ Photographic Studio, follows Sizwe’s quest for survival in the Port Elizabeth of the late sixties, early seventies. Sizwe has been caught without a passbook and must return to King Williams Town to his poverty stricken family or take a chance that could force him to abandon his given name and sense of identity. He is forced to rethink what he believes makes up a man’s identity."

It is on from 11 Jan - 20 Feb 2011.  Click on the image for more details.



Statements in Oxford, UK

Statements After an Arrest Under the Immorality Act - click for link

Nous Theatre present Statements After an Arrest Under the Immorality Act at the Burton Taylor Theatre in Oxford, UK from Feb 1- 5 2011. 

""In every corner of being myself there is a little of you left and now I must start to lose it."

Click on the image for more details.

Reviews from the site:

Review by Celeste Mottahedin-Fardo

";... it’s hard to believe that Athol Fugard’s powerful, affective play is nearly forty years old.

With a drive and urgency that forces the viewer to consider the issues the play raises, this brave new adaptation lingers in the mind long after it finishes. For the first twenty minutes Frieda Joubert (a white librarian) and Errol Philander (a black teacher and Frieda’s lover) lie on a sheet on the floor together, naked in the semi-gloom and lit only for a second by Errol’s striking of a match.

Although this is an effective contrast to the stark camera flashes and searchlights of the second half, some of the sense of intimacy between the lovers is lost because their movements are so hard to see... Onstage nudity in front of an audience sitting less than a few feet away takes a great amount of confidence and trust, which both actors exude in their superb performances.

Miller, in particular seems to have internalised two  of his earlier lines in the play (“I want to be seen” and “What are you frightened of?”) and turned his body into a site of political struggle.

The effects of the Apartheid in South Africa still run deep and this adaptation... impresses upon the audience the necessity of an awareness not only of this instance of racial segregation, but of all cases of discrimination based on colour..."

Review by Charlie Mulliner

"... This play is hard hitting: you are drawn in to the couple’s intimate moments, which begin the play and when you remember that exposure must come, you dread it, meaning the tension throughout the first half of the play is effectively coming from the title of the play itself... Inspiration for the play came from a newspaper cutting in which the lovers were photographed. Fugard did not attempt to find out about their story in any more detail but used the premise to explore how such a deep division in society affects such intimacy and closeness.

The production handled the lighting beautifully... with Frieda (Joana Duyster-Borreda) backing off as Errol (Marcel Miller) lights a match to see her with, breaking their intimacy.

This play demands exceptional performances, and the individual performances of all three actors were excellent... Marcel Miller’s closing speech... [the] anger and frustration that he displayed as he knew all his life and love must come to emptiness, were utterly convincing. An impressive feat carried off with maturity... Yet while the illicit nature of their love is something within the play that is pulling the couple apart and I felt that the production might have, in demonstrating this element of their relationship, have neglected the depth of the underlying affection and love for one another... It is without doubt worth
a watch."


Die Kaptein se Tier in South Africa

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The Fugard Theater and the Suidoosterfees present Die Kaptein se Tier, Antjie Krog’s Afrikaans translation of Athol Fugard’s The Captains Tiger as part of the 2011 Suidoosterfees programme line-up, from 19- 29 Jan 2011.  The run will then be extended at the Fugard Theatre until 5 Feb 2011.

Die Tier (Die Skrywer as ‘n jong man) Neels van Jaarsveld, Donkeyman: Owen Sejake, Betty: Erica Wessels, Die Skrywer: Graham Weir Reggissuer: Janice Honeyman, Ontwerper: Dicky Longhurst, Beligting: Faheem Bardien.

"’n Jong matroos aan boord van die SS Graigaur begin om sy eerste roman neer te pen. Met die hulp van sy muse – ’n portret van sy ma wat lewend geword het – en die bystand van sy vriend – ’n ongeletterde sk".


The Train Driver, US Premiere: extended run

Train Driver - click for link

The American Premiere of The Train Driver will be at the Fountain Theatre, LA.  It is directed by Stephen Sachs and the actors are Morlan Higgins and Adolphus Ward.

"One man's world is transformed by what he sees in the eyes of another human being".

It is on from 8 Oct  2010 and has just been extended to 30 Jan 2011.  Click on the image for more details.


Fugard lectures in South Africa

The Fugard Theatre presents lunch-hour screenings of the lectures delivered by Athol Fugard as part of his Humanitas Visiting Professorship at Oxford and Cambridge University last year.

The lectures, recorded in November 2010 at Oxford University, will be screened in the Fugard Theatre on 24, 26, 28 and 31 Jan and 2, 4 Feb 2011.

Fugard took part in panel discussions, masterclasses, film screenings and lectures from 11– 13 Nov 2010. These sessions were recorded, and will now be screened in 90-minute sessions at the Fugard Theatre.

On 24 and 31 Jan the session screened will be on Playwriting – The Process, with Athol Fugard in conversation with British playwrights Jez Butterworth and Rebecca Lenkiewicz.

On 26 Jan and 2 Feb the session will be on Playing Fugard, with Athol Fugard in conversation with South African actors Janet Suzman and John Kani.

On 28 Jan and 4 Feb the session will be the Humanitas Inaugural Keynote Lecture, with Athol Fugard reflecting on the defining moments in his life and work.

"I was deeply grateful to Oxford University and Eric Abraham for the timely invitation to launch the Humanitas Professorships at Oxford University,” said Fugard. “It came at a time when I have increasingly felt the need to reckon with and map out the fifty-years of playwriting that lie behind me.”

Hello and Goodbye in  St Alban's, UK


Hellp and Goodbye- click for link

Hello and Goodbye is on at the Abbey Theatre, St. Albans, UK from 21-29 Jan 2011.  It is presented by Company of Ten.  Click on the image for more details.  The photo is by Roy Harmer and is copyright Abbey Theatre 2011.


Athol Fugard Talk Back

Athol Fugard will hold a talk back on 21 Nov 2010 after the performance of The Train Driver at the Fountain Theatre, LA.

The Train Driver, British Premiere

Fugard The Train Driver - click for link

The European Premiere of The Train Driver will be at the Hampstead Theatre, London.  It is directed by Athol Fugard.

"Amidst a wasteland of unmarked graves a man seeks revenge and finds redemption. South Africa’s finest playwright brings together two sides of a broken society to find a common humanity in a beautiful and tragic encounter."

It is on from 4 Nov- 4 Dec 2010.  Click on the image above for more details.

Athol Fugard The Train Driver





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