Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Tag: Deborah Vieyra

Shattering Blackbird

My reaction to this play proves the power of theatre to move one, climb into your head, shake out your stuff and freak you out completely. And it’s a reminder that that’s what theatre should do. This production has left me shattered and confused, and I know I am going to struggle to get it out of my mind.

It’s Blackbird, written by the aptly named David Harrower, directed by Bo Petersen and performed by Warrick Grier and Deborah Vieyra, with teeny cameo by Rebekah Nathan (or Lucy Giffard on other nights). Blackbird is on at The Intimate Theatre until the 2nd of October.

I think it’s the kind of play where the less you know about it, the more powerful it is, so I’m not going to say anything about the story. I am going to say that Warrick Grier is totally, rivetingly, creepily, heartbreakingly amazing. His performance is a tour de force. Deborah Vieyra is also really, really good in a difficult, complicated and many layered part, and Bo’s direction is so subtle and detailed it leaves not a moment unattended.

The subject matter of this play is what makes it controversial. Here it is thrown on its head, turned inside out and it reappears for what it is, sexual abuse. I am still trying to get my brain around it. The Intimate Theatre being exactly that, intimate, makes it feel like you are in the room with these two; you can even smell what they smell. It’s a hideous, hard, tender, radical, and riveting piece.

I was not myself at the end of the play. I wanted to give it a standing ovation but I couldn’t stand up. I really was shattered.

Done London

I think it’s weird that there are two little independent plays with London in their title in the Cape Town ether at the same time. Last night I went to see Done London at The Intimate, and the writer of London Road, Nicholas Spagnoletti, was there too. His play opens tomorrow at the Kalk Bay Theatre.

I have read two very good crits about Done London which are out there, and really, I don’t have much to add. It’s a very sweet and totally watchable production with some lovely performances, particularly by Julia Anastasopoulos, Deborah Vieyra and Mark Elderkin. Francesco Nassimbeni directs.

Yes, the script is a bit thin. Yes, there are the usual Saffer stereotypes, and yes, the play has managed to date itself that quickly, since Saffers are no longer eligible for a two year working visa to the UK. Still. I thought it was delightful. And I think it rang quite true.

It’s great to see a big cast in a tiny, independent production. It’s great to do absolutely no work as an audience but to sit back and enjoy the experience. Mark Elderkin and Deborah Vieyra are hilarious, and Julia Anastasopoulos (spell that after a dop!) delivers a bitter sweet and very real heartsick, homesick, wannabe actress doing a kak job in London. Been there. Done that. So horrible.

Done London is worth the R70 ticket for the enjoyment of a totally ‘unboring’ theatre experience. I think people keep comparing it to a TV sitcom because it is fun to watch. Off you go then. It’s on until this Saturday.

Finally; The Tent. Up and Open

Yay. From today there will be other things in my life. We opened last night and I was really happy. I like this play. I love my designer Alfred Rietmann and his set and lights, and Pitchie Rommelaere’s  phenomenal sound. I adore my stage manager Lucas Macuphe. But, most importantly I am completely in love with my extraordinary, talented, diverse, committed and gorgeous cast. Indulge me. I am going to list them and extol their virtues.

Sizwe Msutu. Accomplished, magnetic, powerful. Brilliant story teller and character actor. A rock and a pivot. A star.

Nicola Hanekom. I am in awe of this, one of South Africa’s most shit hot actresses. She is unbelievable. Most talented, beautiful, committed, emotional, connected and creative. She takes the character Ruth to another place.

Pierre Malherbe. So, so good, A director’s actor. Questioning, involved and super skilled. This guy makes the play.

Nelson Chileshe Musonda. Gorgeous. Talented. Delightful. Hilarious. nobody else could be Samson.

Leon Clingman. Creative, serious, intelligent, hardworking. He turned the character of Charlie into a person.

Albert Pretorius. I love watching this guy. Mark my words. He is going places. Brilliant. Catch him in the incredible …miskien at The Intimate later this month.

Deborah Vieyra. She stepped in at short notice and made my life so easy. A delightful, charming, gorgeous actress.

Lungelo Sitimela. Hilarious, hard working, intuitive. An old fashioned, proper, real actor.

A cast from the theatre gods. Thank you for making my dream come true.

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