The world premiere of the play ‘THE ROAD’ written by Robert Lourens will take place at The Barn Theatre, Port Elizabeth Opera House from 26 to 29 July 2017. This play took first place in the recent PANSA Eastern Cape New Writing Festival.
Robert says that, “Although the play is set in 1987 the issues dealt with are as valid today as they were then - Alcoholism, Gender violence and the inhumane treatment of people.”
The play revolves around a mottled group of recovering alcoholics, a middle aged Coloured and White man, an older Afrikaans and a young Indian woman, on the road from Pretoria to Mbabatho, to attend an Alcoholics Anonymous Convention. Although travelling illegally together according to the then laws of the country, they find themselves drawn together by the common addiction of alcohol and their common ancestry as human beings.
Imagine four vastly different opiniated people confined in a car on a long journey – What could go wrong? This story may be true of an era 30 years ago but the issues still prevail today. Robert says, “It is true that each of our circumstances may be different but we are all in the same vehicle, on the same road headed for the same destination with the same needs and dreams – Security, Love, Dignity and Hope. We need to break down the barriers and talk to one another and we may find we have more in common than we thought.”
Although the play is set in and around Gauteng and the North West Provinces and speaks of the areas of Lady Selbourne and Eersterus, the play was born out of stories heard from the people of South End.
The story of hurts endured during the apartheid years come to light, which reflect on their interactions with people. This is a journey through the lives of these four people, experiencing the hurts of the past, the reality of the present and the perceived ramifications of the future. This is their story, this is our story, this is your story.
‘THE ROAD’ is written by Robert Lourens, directed by Anneke Groenewald starring Aarti Narotam, Arthur Daniels, Justin Oliphant and Vanessa Lynne Smith
About the Writer/Producer
Robert Lourens has been involved with Theatre since 1973 as a Stage Manger/Director, Lighting Designer, Producer and Sound Engineer. He has worked for P.A.C.T., The Baxter Theatre and Lester’s Theatre. He has worked on Drama, Ballet and Musical productions with world renowned actors and directors. The idea of writing and producing shows, all started with the musical productions of ‘Destined to Win’ and ‘Under the Boardwalk’, which he wrote, coordinated and produced with his wife Marianah. The writing of drama plays, however, started seriously in 2005 when he heard a challenge - that we all need to tell our stories. Robert attended a writing workshop with Roy Sargeant and his short play ‘Legacy’ was produced under the direction of Marlene Pieterse. Since then it has become a love affair to create theatrical journeys and to explore different aspects of the art of writing.
About the Director
Anneke’s love for theatre when she was ten years old and has been under the guidance of Marlene Pieterse since then. She loves everything about the theatre, whether it is being on stage, backstage or just creating the magic of theatre. She received her diploma from Stageworld Theatre School and she also has an LTCL in Speech and Drama from Trinity College London.
Anneke has been a part of memorable productions such as ‘Sixteen’, which deals with the struggles of drug abuse amoungst teenagers and ‘Medea 2012’, a modern take on the much loved classic.
Her love for backstage started in the production of ‘Sorrows and Rejoicings’ by the amazing Athol Fugard, directed by Marlene Pieterse and Anneke was the stage manager for PEAAT's ‘Mamma ek wil 'n man hê.’
She loves to write and one of the productions that she wrote and of which she is proud of is ‘Mopanja’, about the struggles and everything that can go wrong in a hospital. Most recently Anneke was involved with the all female cast production, ‘Slaves of Silence’ staged at the Barn Theatre, a piece of theatre where the question arises will you have the courage to no longer be silent?
Your Experience At The Venue
A cash bar is available at the Ideas Corner Bar (Upper Foyer) and the Sweet Counter at the Ground Floor [open an hour before the show begins and after the show].
Show Dates : 26 - 29 July 2017
Venue : The Barn Theatre, PE Opera House
Time : [26 - 28 July] 19:00
[29 July] 14:00 and 19:00
There will be post performance discussions (question and answer sessions) with the writer, director and cast after each performance
Admission : R50.00 (Students and Pensioners are R20.00)
limited seating be sure to be early
Tickets will be sold at the door. Bookings can be arranged through:
Cingiwe Skosana (firstname.lastname@example.org )
Nomgcobo Mkize (email@example.com)