A
 
Web www.artsmart.co.za
A R T S M A R T
arts news from kwazulu-natal

festivals
www.artsmart.co.za
enquiries@artsmart.co.za
 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
 

NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

BAOBABS DON’T GROW HERE (article first published : 2002-07-14)

A suitcase, a coat, two hats, a large wooden box and two hessian backdrops silently welcome the arriving theatregoers. A grim picture: lonely, without energy yet pregnant. A mystifying title: Baobabs Don’t Grow Here, directed by Sylvaine Strike. And two actors: James Cunningham and Helen Iskander.

Explosion! A theatrical masterpiece at the 2002 National Arts Festival long to be remembered and admired. Fresco Theatre’s fringe gem confirms the state of theatre in our country: fresh, superbly creative, clever and tremendously entertaining with all elements of true theatre firmly in place.

The two performers take you on a journey that convinces you that the theatres can and will be filled to maximum capacity again.

Sylvaine Strike has created a highly moving and fascinating piece of theatre. It encapsulates the best of Nicholas Ellenbogen’s Raiders series; Andrew Buckland and Lionel Newton’s hilarious physical theatre and Ellis Pearson and Bheki Mkwane’s sincerity and simplicity.

The highly effective use of hessian created a wondrous enchantment of a set as did the introduction of miniscule puppets which gave another dimension to the script. A gypsy couple sets out in search of a baobab tree so that the woman can give birth beneath its spreading boughs.

Traveling from North Africa all the way to the south, sometimes by train, then on foot, the story unfolds. Reflections of countries, cultures and terrains take Matisse and Marique on their life journey together. Solitude becomes emotionally warm and passionate as they search for their dream tree to give their first-born a proper strong headstart in life. They believe this will endow their child with gifts of strength and fortitude.

Their encounters symbolize true love, passion for one’s dreams and taking firm control of one’s own destination in synergy with that of a loved one. A simple story with riveting and complex emotions that provides for hilarious fare, while being simultaneously heartrending and superbly entertaining.

Helen Iskander and James Cunningham’s energy, nuance abilities and physical discipline were explored to their fullest by Sylvaine Strike in this forceful performance. – Thomie Holtzhausen




 A current news
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
letters to the editor
home page
archives A
crafts - dance - drama - film & tv - literature
music - supper theatre - visual arts
miscellaneous news - festivals
a co-production by caroline smart services and .durbanet. site credits
copyright © subsists in this page. all rights reserved. [ edit ] copyright details  artsmart