The 2020 Season at The Fugard has been released, and BEVERLY BROMMERT has the details:
A 10th anniversary is not only an occasion to celebrate; it also invites reflection on a decade of existence, achievement and aspirations. September 2019 brought the Fugard Theatre’s announcement of what lies in store for Cape Town’s theatregoers next year as this establishment marks the first decade of its existence, and coinciding with this release was a retrospective of that decade from Daniel Galloway, Lamees Albertus and Greg Karvellas, all key figures in the Fugard’s artistic and administrative management.
Without exception and from their different perspectives, all three enthused about the Fugard’s steady progress towards becoming synonymous with world-class theatre and cinema: Galloway, MD and Producer at this theatre, emphasised the commitment and passion of the team with which he works; Albertus, Theatre Manager and Co-Producer, focused on the empowering humanity of the Fugard’s ethos; and Karvellas, the Artistic Director, brimmed with energy and enthusiasm over the quality and diversity of what the theatre has to offer. A list of productions staged there over the past nine years reads like a compendium of internationally acclaimed shows, from sombre pieces like A Human Being Died That Night to the wacky Rocky Horror Show, which had 444 performances. It’s taken 10 years to get there, and no one is resting on any laurels. Not for nothing was the launch titled: 2020 Season – 10 Years and Counting.
10 years in Cape Town
When the Fugard Theatre added its name to the list of Cape Town’s venues in February 2010, founded by Eric Abraham, it was not clear where it would be in February 2020. Appropriately, that date finds one of Athol Fugard’s greatest masterpieces on the stage of the theatre named after him: Master Harold and the Boys, a new production starring Desmond Dube and Kai Luke Brummer. The months that follow bring widely varied entertainment, including some new ventures for the Fugard – such as its maiden take on Hamlet, and the first farce to appear on its programme in the shape of Terrence McNally’s It’s Only a Play, directed by Karvellas.
A source of pride to the Fugard is that Pieter-Dirk Uys has chosen it as the venue to celebrate his own personal milestone as he turns 75, with two seasons. The first, in March 2020, is Never Too Naked, featuring Bambi Kellermann, and the second, a tour de force in November as PDU performs ten plays in ten days. New works are not wanting either, with the première of Mike van Graan’s latest drama, What We Wish For (an exploration of euthanasia) in early May, and Nadia Davids’ freshly minted play, Hold Still, about challenging moral issues, opening in June.
After the dark brilliance of Christopher Hampton’s A German Life and Marsha Norman’s ‘Night, Mother (not for the faint-hearted) the year ends joyously with the stage version of Mel Brooks’ monstrous musical hit, Young Frankenstein. Diversity could hardly be greater to make this a theatrical smorgasbord for all seasons.
In addition, there is the array of cinematic theatre, opera and ballet recorded live from international companies of note, which in 2020 is expanded to feature 47 titles in 52 weeks.
Abrahams and his dedicated team have cause for congratulation as the Fugard embarks on its tenth year of productions.
What: The 2020 Season at The Fugard