And how nail bitingly brilliant were those last 5 minutes of cricket yesterday? I hope it wasn’t a one-off lucky streak thing. It was amazing. Hectic. Amazing. Almost nearly gives me something to hope for!
Month: October 2007 (Page 1 of 5)
So everybody knows that on a Monday night we perform TheatreSports at the Intimate Theatre. we’ve been there (with varying degrees of success) since March and hope and intend to be there indefinitely. The space is fantastic for small, intimate shows and lots of simple shows do runs there. It’s a pain in the bum for all that sets and stuff need to be moved to accommodate our Monday night performances but it is always a negotiated settlement. “Ja! leave your curtain up and we’ll find a way of using it.” “We promise we won’t refocus the lights!” etc. It’s the same at The Kalk Bay Theatre too. That’s how it is.
We are an easy bunch to accommodate. We improvise. We make a plan. We can do TheatreSports pretty much anywhere, any time. So when a group of theatre makers pulls in with hard core attitude and then behaves like pigs, it sticks in the throat. And leaves a shit taste there too. I don’t get it. And the worst part is, I am a potential target audience. No, more than that. I am a committed supporter. I try to see as much as I possibly can. And now I really don’t feel like going. I’m just not feeling very generous towards this show even though I have only heard great things about it. A case of biting the hand that feeds? And let’s face it, we’re all a pretty ravenous bunch.
Ok so I had pizza and wine after the show and I couldn’t sleep last night which is probably making me feel even more maudlin, but I really hope A Circus Side Show still has a life. I can’t possibly believe that it won’t happen again. It has to.
In terms of me, maybe I can spend a bit of energy on TheatreSports now, and I’m also going to go and see other shows. There seems to be quite a bit on that I haven’t managed to get to yet.
I am almost on my way to the final performance of A Circus Side Show but I’ve still got the PANSA play readings on my mind. I still can’t get over how unfair it was on Thami and his cast. Really, it was like giving a captain a holey lifeboat with Japanese instructions for survival. Anyway, Nicholas called me with the results. False Witness by Paul Ian Johnson was judged Best Play. Willem Breedt won Best Director for Star of the West and London Road by Nicholas Spagnoletti was runner-up and best audience choice. Big Friendly reminded me that I was equally disillusioned, but for different reasons, with the 2005 PANSA play readings. He is right. I was. Maybe I’m the one with the problem.
I hope these feelings have dissipated by next weekend. I am participating in PANSA’s exciting new 48 hour play festival. More about that later.
I have come back from the final play reading in the PANSA competition a little shaken up and very emotional. This post might end up being a bit of a ramble. I suppose I need to admit AGAIN up front that I too entered a play which got an honorable mention but didn’t make it into the finals. What did however was a rambling, unintelligible, endless, complicated, indecipherable, dense discourse, A Mubiru Tragedy, written byÂ a Ugandan Edouard Kanoxo who is MIA and presumed dead. Sitting through the play reading was an untold agony. The poor cast had only the most superficial understanding of this most convoluted dialogue and plot, the poor director spent the rehearsal week cutting the script into a mere miserable one and a half hour long from an original three (God save us) and us the poor audience were rendered entirely laughless. Ouch.
Of course I couldn’t keep my fat mouth shut during the discussion and probably made my name so gat with the judges, but I was upset and incredulous. I don’t know who they thought would manage to direct a palatable version in a week and both director and cast really suffered. Thami Mbongo is a talented and creative director who was faced with an impossible task. The cast, who were 90% first language XhosaÂ speaking, were faced with having to play foreign immigrants and perform subject matter that was virtually academic in its understanding of English. Hectic. They could not survive and it was so horrible.
So again the spotlight falls on the nature of the PANSA playwriting competition. What are the criteria? How are the levels of success measured? What happens afterwards?Â I didn’t stay for the prize giving, I was too emotional. The winner’s play will get to go to the national championships and the winner of that will get funding to be put on around the country. Let’s face facts. That play is going to be the most palatable, accessible, polished and ready piece of writing, well directed and most audience friendly. What happened with Mubiru is a bit of a death sentence, and I think that is the biggest tragedy.
This evening at 6pm is your last chance to see A Circus Side Show.