The Fugard Theatre invites you to (re)experience some of the most popular National Theatre presented productions, all filmed live, with their latest Bioscope Season. These screenings will transport you to the heart of British theatre, right from the comfort of your Cape Town Fugard seat, with a full size high definition cinema screen and 7.1 dolby digital surround sound system.
Greg Karvellas, Resident Director & General Manager of the Fugard Theatre, is excited to see audiences enjoy the latest Bioscope line-up in such great theatrical style:
"Now going into its incredible seventh year, the Fugard Bioscope has built up a reputation for a unique and world-class experience to watch some of the world's best theatre, opera and ballet filmed live from the heart of the action, and screened in the best environment - a theatre. For many of our loyal and long-standing patrons, the Bioscope experience has become an integral part of their Sunday routine. A visit to the Fugard Bioscope not only transports you with the filmed live action on stage but also captures the essence of an exciting outing to the Theatre. Guests can enjoy a drink from our full bar, as well as snacks, before and after the show, as they would at a live performance."
They've even upped the Fugard's already impressive level of Bioscope entertainment by adding two Monday night screenings, as well as one Saturday morning option too.
Their Bioscope season kicks off with the Bard's comedy, Twelfth Night on 17 December 2018, before they invite your inner child to go on an adventure with fairies, pirates and lost boys as dreamt up by JM Barrie in Peter Pan.
Our stage-to-screen reviewer, Maria Vos, comments that, even though forever-young Peter (Paul Hilton) is mischievously magical, "the spotlight belongs to Anna Francolini, who truly excels in her portrayal of Captain Hook." With spellbinding puppetry and art-jam style paint splatter, Vos definitely recommends this NT Live presented classic for your viewing pleasure - after all, you’re never too old to fly away with the Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up! So pen Saturday, 23 December 2017, into your diary for a visit to Neverland.
Then we turn to the more dramatic on Sunday, 7 January 2018, when the Fugard offers patrons NT Live ringside seats to a riveting relationship match in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? "In what could entirely reasonably be described as a soul-crushing, liver-destroying, marriage-terminating afterparty-from-hell, Martha (Imelda Staunton) and George (Conleth Hill) introduce two new acquaintances to their own special kind of purgatory", in a manner that Vos says may see the audience members go home "after the final bell of the last round of the whole violent, brilliantly-acted spectacle with more questions than answers, but also with the lingering suspicion that Edward Albee’s text has emerged as the victor and will continue to be a knock-out for many years to come."
14 January 2018 sees Tom Stoppard’s classic tragicomedy, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, grace the Fugard Bioscope screen in what Vos describes as "a soaring, relentless, and touching excursion through the bends and twists of the human psyche." In this production you'll be treated to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern as respectively played by Daniel Radcliffe and Joshua McGuire. "Or was it the other way round?", ponders Vos. "No one seems sure, including the characters themselves. These two actors do a fine job navigating the existential crises of two dramatis personae who are trying to make sense of their own place in a story... their witty, rapid-fire dialogue an alluring defence against the reality of the abyss."
Then it is time for the much anticipated screening of the inspirational, defiant and achingly human Angels in America.
On 15 January 2018, in Part 1, Millennium Approaches. Vos reviews that the production, "directed by Marianne Elliott, uses a clever revolving set, dramatic lighting changes, and a thoughtfully developed sound design to make sure the action moves seamlessly from one scene to the next." With an incredibly talented cast, of the calibre of Andrew Garfield (as prophet Prior) and Nathan Lane (as lawyer Roy), there are "no weak links" in this gay fantasia, as they deliver emotional and electrifying performances, inviting the audiences into their turbulent lives.
Their "lives intersect," in Part 2 on 22 January 2018 with Perestroika, as the great work begins. Vos continues that the "past seem to reach into the present and assert its authority from the very start of the play" with overlapping relationships, emotions and personal struggles heightening the theatrical experience. In the conclusion of this spectacular production, "Prior’s meeting with the Angel (Amanda Lawrence in fine form) is punctuated by booming cinematic music and illuminated by bands of red, blue, and white light descending from the heavens". Ultimately, this staging of Tony Kushner's tour-de-force play, set during the AIDS crisis in mid-80s New York City, "allows its characters to look forward and break free of the grip of the past."
In between the screenings of Angels in America's Millenium Approaches and Perestroika, the Fugard Bioscope on 21 January 2018 treats you to director Ivo van Hove's Obsession, a reimagining of "Luchino Visconti’s 1943 Italian feature Ossessione, itself an adaptation of James M. Cain’s 1934 novel The Postman Always Rings Twice." Vos explains that this stripped down staging, focussing on the spark between Gino (Jude Law) and Hannah (Halina Reijn) as they conspire to murder her overbearing husband, is most gripping in "moments of physical theatre that quickly become the best thing about the play". She describes Law's performance as "compelling" as "he manages to free a lot of human emotion trapped" in the text.
Then this fantastic stage-to-screen season wraps up with music, power and jealousy, as Lucian Msamati steps into the role of Salieri (obsessively at war with the young Mozart) in Peter Shaffer`s iconic play, Amadeus on 28 January 2018.
Tickets (R100) for the Fugard's Bioscope season are limited and sell out quickly, so don’t delay in booking your seats through Computicket. Bookings can also be made at the Fugard Theatre box office on 021 461 4554.