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Theatre Forum 2002

Theatre Forun on Fugard and Sorrows and Rejoicings

Includes "A Gift for His Birthday" about Sorrows and Rejoicings by Marianne McDonald.  Issue nr 21.  Good analysis of Sorrows and Rejoicings.

"the play is a wake, and an awakening of memories about a man who has died.  There is a series of memories in which Dawid appears- five in fact- just like the acts of a Greek play; and the women are the chorus who define Dawid"

and some good insights into Fugard

"I and my writing belong to a world where a lot of people can't put words on paper and tell their story".

Theater Week 1995

Theatre week with a Fugard interview

An interview with Fugard by Michael P. Scasserra.  It took place as Valley Song was being premiered.

"You can dig very deeply into the human heart when you are only dealing with two characters".

Twentieth century Literature, Winter 1993

click for link

Some problems of a playwright from South Africa- Transcript
"No way out": 'Sizwe Bansi is Dead' and the dilemma of political drama in South Africa by Andre Brink
Drama and politics in a state of emergency: Athol Fugard's 'My Children! My Africa!'by Nicholas Visser
The apprenticeship years by Sheila Fugard
Encounters with Fugard: native of the Karoo by Mary Benson
Fugard masters the code by Gerald Weales
Crossing boundaries: the genesis of the township plays by Dennis Walder
Life in the theatre: autobiography, politics, and romance in "Master Harold" … and the boys by John O. Jordan
A tribute for Athol Fugard at sixty by Don Maclennan
Power, self, and other: the absurd in 'Boesman and Lena.' by Craig W. McLuckie
The artist as an outcast and a mother in 'The Road to Mecca.' by Janet Ruth Heller
Introduction: Fugard, women, and politics by Jack Barbera
Fugard as director: an interview with the cast of 'Boesman and Lena.' Interview by Jack Barbera
Realizing Fugard by Susan Hilferty

You can read the articles on-line.  Click the image.

Theater, Winter 1982

Theatre and interviews of Fugard and Zakes Mokae

The full text of Master Harold, plus photos from the production, and interesting interviews with Fugard (by Heinrich von Staden) and with Zakes Mokae (by Alisa Solomon).

Master Harold... and the boys

"Anyhow, Athol would leave sometimes, and then he'd come back with a new play. One time he came back with
The Blood Knot. We performed the play on a hot Sunday night and it lasted more than four hours. On Monday the papers were raving about all happened so fast the government couldn't do anything about it"

Athol Fugard

"You don't have a university degree."
"No, and the language academics use sometimes makes me wonder whether I, in fact, speak English or not".

"Talk. Talk. Talk. That doesn't change a farthing".

Theater fall/winter 1987

Theater on A Place with the Pigs

The full text of A Place with the Pigs, plus photos from the production, and an interesting interview with Fugard by Gabrielle Cody and Joel Schechter.

Athol Fugard in A Place with the Pigs

"...all plays risk some hazards. The Road to Mecca was for some people about getting old and going to an old age home..."

"[Boesman and Lena]... it is Lena's point of view and it is Lena's journey, with Boesman an attendant and terrible presence in her drama. You don't really get in to Boesman in the way you get in to Lena... That situation is reversed in Pigs".


Related books


The Drama of South Africa 1999

The Drama of South Africa

An overview of "plays, pageants and publics since 1910" by Loren Kruger. A very good overview of South African theatre. As well as Fugard it has comprehensive sections on for example the writer Dhlomo and the play King Kong.

Athol Fugard

"The actors...introduced themselves using the names of characters they had played in previous Serpent productions...this gesture directed the audience to the implications of the actors rather than the personal motivations of the characters, while also hiding the identity of the actors from the security police".

Writing South Africa: Literature, apartheid and democracy, 1970-1995

 Writing South Afica

A collections of essays, edited by Derek Attridge and Rosemary Jolly.  Articles about writers such as Andre Brink and Coetzee, as well as lesser known writers.

Dennis Walder“s Spinning out the Present: narrative, gender and the politics of South African theatre includes a significant section on Fugard "nor de we have all the detail we need about the creative input of key performers in all the work associated with Fugard- performers such as Zakes Mokae, John Kani, Winston Ntshona, and especially, Yvonne Bryceland".

Playing the Market: The Market Theatre Johannesburg 1976-1986

Playing the Market

A history of the theatre by Anne Fuchs, 1990.  Interesting is the developments of two streams of white theatre liberalism: the one encouraging black theatre, the other not getting involved unless invited: "Barney Simon adapted the stance advocated by the Black Consciousness Movement for a white cultural sympathizer: non-interventionist but ready to help if asked to by Africans on their own terms... Fugard whose association with the Serpent Players and their subsequent introduction to the Space Theatre appears to have been very much on his terms".

And on Hello and Goodbye

"...before Athol's next play, Hello and Goodbye in 1965, both audiences and casts had become segregated by law. It was at this point that Ian Bernhardt...with Barnie Simon and others, formed The Phoenix Players, which gave private performance to African audiences while presenting the same productions to all-white audiences at the Library Theatre in Johannesburg".

"The hall was packed out and by the time the interval came round there were no aisles left at all. Everyone had just packed up their chairs and moved them further forward to be nearer the stage. Then it rained and the hall leaked but no-one left. They just turned up their collars and sat on".

At the Royal Court

At the Royal Court

25 Years of the English Stage Company, edited by Richard Findlater, 1981.  Various playwrights and actors discuss their involvement with the Royal Court Theatre.  Fugard is covered with five pages, covering Boesman and Lena, Sizwe Bansi is Dead, The Island and Statements After an Arrest Under the Immorality Act. "I will be grateful to the Royal Court till my dying day.  I have just one regret: that I never acted there, though Oscar [Lewenstein] wanted me to".

Sizwe Bansi in 1977 ran for 41 performances, with the highest number of seats sold in the year- 72%, second was Waiting for Godot with 53%.  Sizwe grossed £23,075.

There are good photos (Fugard as Boesman below):

Fugard as Boesman

Other playwrights covered include Osborne, Beckett, Wesker, Bond and Hare.


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