With skillful direction, Louis Viljoen has woven three short plays into a delicate and intriguing single production in the latest Alexander Bar presentation of Anthology: After the End.
Bringing together three distinct focus points, as respectively reflected through the unique styles and tone of Nicholas Spagnoletti (“abreast”), Jon Keevy (“The Shepard”), and Louis Viljoen (“Cherub-A-Dub-Dub”) as contributing wordsmiths, Viljoen as director succeeds in creating a striking theatrical rhythm. He captures the audience’s attention with a vision that subtly showcases distinctive perspectives of “ends” in a surprisingly complementary manner. One would not think it possible when confronted by three scenarios as seemingly dissimilar as a woman in a standoff with a patronizing digitally- blinded rival, a cut-throat political metaphor of somewhat delusional “conquering, cunning gods”, and the unlikely friendship of a forgotten human and a land-grabbing cherub. However, believe me, Viljoen makes it work.
For 60 minutes you are invited to meander through the minds of three great theatre creatives and relish in the imagination and originality of their ideas (or more specifically snippets thereof) in the now established Anthology platform. It is a smorgasbord of fascinating twists and turns that keep you on your toes, wanting to know more of the short play you are enjoying in that brief moment, while also eagerly awaiting and wondering what surprise is lurking around the next corner.
Collectively these three short plays prove that one does not have to present monologues that roll on for what feels like hours to create powerful storylines with depth. Add to the brilliance of the brevity the powerhouse performer and chameleon that is Daneel van der Walt, skillfully balanced by the artistry of Donna Cormack-Thomson, and you have a winning recipe for certain.
I left feeling thoroughly entertained by a modern-medieval delight with a futuristic twist, emphasising the timelessness of the human condition of ego-infused-gullibility, which leaves us constantly surprised by the concept of “endings”.
Skip the rush hour traffic, go have a cheeseboard and a glass of wine at Alexander Bar after work, and then treat yourself to 60 minutes of great theatre at 7pm (limited run until 17 September), when you indulge in Anthology: After the End. Book online to get a fabulous discount on your ticket too!