More than fifty-five years ago, two actresses, Cecilia Sonnenberg and René Ahrenson, together with Leslie French, a Shakespeare production specialist, realized the potential of this open-air space and with the support of the municipality, re-sloped the land and diverted the stream. The first production of The Taming of the Shrew took place in 1956.
Christopher Sly, a congenial drunk flung out of a bar by the pub’s Hostess, falls into a deep sleep and dreams a dream. That dream is the story of the taming of Katherina, the Shrew, by Petruchio. This play-within-a-dream, with its wild and giddy uses of disguises, mistaken identities, and confusions provides consummate comedy for all. Circus owner Petruchio drags Katherina into a mad, topsy-turvy world of clowns, jugglers, tumblers, a lion and Petruchio’s spaniel, Troilus. Through this comic, and at times brutal chaos, two of Shakespeare’s most celebrated lovers encounter a rugged path to true love.
The Taming of the Shrew, directed by Roy Sargeant, promises to be charming, sexy, dignified, full of surprises, yet faithful to Shakespeare’s meaning. Set and costumes are designed by Dicky Longhurst within a contemporary setting with a touch of modern pizzazz. Starring a young, talented cast with Anthea Thompson as Katherina and Grant Swanby as Petruchio.
The Taming of the Shrew opens on Saturday, 15 January at 20:15. Early bird patrons can enjoy special discounted preview tickets at two-for-the-price-of-one on 11 and 12 January at 20:15.
Other discounted packages are on 17, 18, 24, 25 January at 19:15 (please note earlier starting time) – book between 4 and 6 tickets at R100 or R110 per ticket. Special performances for learners are 26, 31 January, 1, 2, 7, 8 February at 19:45; ticket prices are R50.
Venue: Maynardville Open Air Theatre, Wynberg. Tel: 083 915 8000 or (021) 421 7695.
Price: R100, R130, R150
Performances: 15 Jan 2011 -