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THE MEMORY OF WATER (article first published : 2003-02-21)

Greg King and KickstArt – the forward thinking theatre company that produced Popcorn, Private Lives, Keely and Du, The Importance of Being Earnest and Steel Magnolias proudly present The South African Premiere of The Memory of Water at Kwasuka Theatre.

A seriously-dark, bitter-sweet comedy by one of Britain’s hottest new playwrights, Sheila Stephenson, it is about three very different sisters brought together for their mother's funeral.

Voted UK “Play of the Year” three years ago, and winner of an Olivier Award for Best New Comedy in 2000, The Memory of Water has had successful seasons in London and New York as well as Croatia, Finland, New York, Chicago, Toronto, Germany and Belgium!

Directed, produced and designed by Greg King, The Memory of Water is about what “normal people do in abnormal situations.” The way these highly dysfunctional siblings deal with the death of their mother – and none of them really got along with her - produces some uproariously funny and sometimes unsettling scenarios.

During their unexpected reunion the three sisters bicker constantly over conflicting memories of their childhoods. Teresa (Liesl Coppin) is the martyred caregiver who resents her sisters for abandoning her with a woman in the throes of Alzheimer's. Mary (Clare Mortimer) is the classic over-achiever in a crisis who has reached the point where she's researching neural disorders during the funeral arrangements. The prodigal daughter Catherine (Olivia Borgen) is a drugged-out, self-absorbed shopaholic and motor-mouth, who is in fact a lonely child, slightly lost and desperate for affection.

Vera Clare plays the sisters’ mother who appears in Mary’s dreams, revealing some dark secrets about their childhood. The cast also includes Peter Court and Greg King. The play ultimately explores the influence that parents exert on their children’s lives, long after they have left. It poses the question: Do our memories make us who we are?

The Memory of Water will be staged at the Kwasuka Theatre in Greyville from February 26 until March 22. Shows are on Tuesday to Saturday at 20h00 with Saturday matinees at 15h00. Booking is through Greg on 083 544 2006, or Computicket on 011 340 8000. The production is recommended for mature audiences and contains strong language.




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