Cape Town Premiere of Sylvaine Strike's Brand New TARTUFFE To Bow at the Baxter Flipside

Cape Town Premiere of Sylvaine Strike's Brand New TARTUFFE To Bow at the Baxter Flipside
Craig Morris and Khutjo Green in TARTUFFE
Photo credit: Dee-Ann Kaaijk

Cape Town audiences now have the chance to catch the Fortune Cookie Theatre Company's brand new production of Molière's TARTUFFE, in a translation by Richard Wilbur directed by the award-winning Sylvaine Strike, at the Baxter Flipside for a limited season this April.

Molière is regarded as one of the greatest masters of comedy and TARTUFFE once again sees Strike bring her winning signature directorial style to his work. The production follows the Fortune Cookie Theatre Company's runaway success in 2012 with THE MISER, which ran to wide critical acclaim and seventy sold-out performances. The production won four Naledi Awards, including Best Production and Best Director, as well as two Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards.

Tartuffe is a weasely swindler, disguised as a paragon of piety who manipulates his way into Orgon's house and unleashes his lecherous reign. Exploring the way in which people are easily manipulated by symbols of power and honeyed words, TARTUFFE is one of Molière's masterpieces, an uneasy comedy with a potent message at its core. Controversial when it was first performed in 1664, the play was closed down and censored, Molière having questioned by the religious authorities of the time, who saw in it an audacious critique of hypocrisy within the church. Considering this, in a time when the artist, cartoonist or satirist's freedom of expression was not guaranteed, TARTUFFE is as relevant now as it was then. Strike says:

Promoting the work of Molière is even more relevant today as it remains utterly universal through the ongoing power of his words. We are proud to showcase the genius of one of France's most accomplished artists, whose masterpiece TARTUFFE will be performed by a brilliant South African cast, within a context never seen before and which promises a lot of surprises. It is a play which, through the strength of its comedy and satire of society, also invites us to question and interrogate.

Making his long-awaited return to the stage, Neil McCarthy (BORN IN THE RSA) plays Orgon, with Khutjo Green (ANIMAL FARM) as his wife Elmire. Craig Morris (JOHNNY BOSKAK IS FEELING FUNNY) takes on the title role of Tartuffe and theatre stalwart Vanessa Cooke (VIGIL) plays the housekeeper, Dorine. Other cast members include Anele Situlweni (7DE LAAN), Vuyelwa Maluleke (EMOTIONAL CREATURE), Adrian Alper (GENERATIONS), William Harding (THE MISER) and Camilla Waldman (CLOSER).

The production team is filled out by Sasha Ehlers and Chen Nakar (set design), Sasha Ehlers (costume design), Oliver Hauser (lighting design), Dean Barrett (musical composition) and Owen Lonza (choreography).

The production has been made possible through the support of Total South Africa, BNP Paribas and RCS (a BNP Paribas group company) and Mazars and is presented by the Baxter Theatre Centre, in association with the French Institute of South Africa (IFAS)and the Alliance Française of Cape Town.

TARTUFFE will be performed in the Baxter Flipside from 18 - 29 April at 19:30, with additional performances on 22 and 29 April at 14:00 and 25 April at 11:00. Tickets to the previews (18 - 20 April) and matinees cost R130, whilet tickets during the run cost R140 on Mondays to Thursdays and R160 on Fridays and Saturdays. Block bookings of ten or more cost R120 per ticket, while students and pensioners will pay R110 a ticket. Bookings can be made online at Computicket, by phone in 0861 915 8000 or in person at any Shoprite Checkers outlet. For discounted block-bookings for corporates, schools, charities or fundraisers, contact Sharon Ward on 021 680 3962 or or Carmen Kearns. There is an age restriction of 16 years.

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