mesmerising and funny statement of solipsistic woe and questioning awareness. (Denis O’Toole) ['11 Go On, Gate Theatre, Dublin, Assembly Rooms (Ballroom ), 54 George Street (venue3) 226 242 7/8. Until 30Aug (not Mon) 7. 45—9.30pm. £4.50(£3.50)
Originally seen at the Edinburgh Festival in 1982. before transferring to the Riverside Studios in London. then the West End and New York. W028 Albert! now returns to the Assembly Rooms. curiously but capably by way of Ghana rather than South Africa.
It is no less potent four years on. especially since these four years have seen South Africa in the news — with or without the blackout — more than ever. It consists of rapid scenes from black life in white SA. and their respective reactions to the envisaged second coming of the Messiah to the country. where he finally arrives by Jumbo Jet and is arrested as a communist imposter. It ends, stirringly. by him calling up the ghosts of those who have lost their lives in the struggle for freedom: ‘Woza, Albert!‘ — Rise Up. Albert (Luthuli); ‘Woza. Steve!‘— Rise Up. Steve (Biko).
The structure of the play is
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I’ll Go on,
stunningly simple, and the effect electrifying. Amazingly, there are just two actors — whose performances here are just as accomplished as those of the show’s original cast. (Mark Shenton) Woza Alberti, Abibigromma-Ghana, Assembly Rooms. Wildman Room (venue 3) 226 2427/8. Until 30 A ug (not Mons), 7.45—9.30pm. £4 (£3).
Working is about work: a simple, but not simplistic. unconventional Broadway musical about people‘s everyday lives and the jobs they do.
In stirring song and short monologues, the show adopts a documentary style narrative: superficially. it is no more ambitious than to fill in some personal details behind the job descriptions of telephonists and truckers, hookers and housewives. But as skilfully adapted by Stephen Schwartz and Nina Faso from a book by Studs Terkel, it inevitably builds a cumulative picture of personal ambitions and public work.
The music comes from a team of writers — usually a sign ofa show which ran into trouble before it reached Broadway — but here it turns out, miraculously. as a totally unified score. And what a score! There may be a couple ofdisposable songs, but most are marvellous, and it is magnificently served by this American company.
American actors seem born to play musicals — their abilities are almost instinctive — and in a superbly confident production, there are notable performances from Francis Kane as a steelworker, Eric Peterson as a newspaper delivery boy. and Chris Burns as a parking lot attendant. The band is tiny but terrific. Line up with your UB40 cards now to see it! (Mark Shenton) Working, Studio Theatre Productions, Heriot Watt Theatre, 30 Grindlay Street, 22935 74 ( venue 7) Until30Aug (not Sun), 4.30-6pm. £3 (£2).
Life after the Bomb isn’t the most original idea for a play, but Theatre lmaginaire‘s engaging and atmospheric production of Yes, Peut-Etre by Marguerite Duras emphasizes more than just the horror ofpost-nuclear desolation. Two women meet in a desert (one carrying a wounded soldier from the War Preserve), their loneliness
f repetitive, but a fine sense of timing and tremendous performances make
, durability ofthe survival instinct
when pitted against all odds. (Hattie é Evans) Yes, Peut-Etre, in association with TheatreAC T, Riﬂe Lodge
3.10—4.10pm. £2.50 (£2).
unable to communicate at all.
play, yet it is never boring. and if anything becomes more and more
underlined by the solace they appear to find in successfully communicating to each other with the few words they know.
The one. played by Kathryn Hunter. almost childlike with her wide eyes, na'ivety and optimism; the other. Nella Marin, not much less ignorant than her acquaintance but giving the impression of being more resigned to unanswered questions. And the soldier from the War Preserve, a constant reminder of Before Before. lying on the ground,
A particularly telling scene has a black policeman arresting a black man for using a whites-only toilet. and his colleague trying successfully to dissuade him; the same colleague then arrests a white man for urinating in the street. and is advised to set him free.
It is performed with customary energy and commitment by Audbrey Radebe. Sidney Khumalo and Aubrey Moalosi Molefe. under the direction of Percy Mtwa, who was one of the actors as well as co-authors of Woza Albert. (Mark Shenton) Bopha.’, Earth Players, Traverse Theatre (venue 15) Grassmarket. Tickets: 226 2633 . 23, 27, 29Aug, 4pm; 26, 28, 30Aug. 6.30pm; 22, 24Aug 9pm. £4.85 (£3 cones at Traverse box office). Discount for members.
Nothing actually happens in the
absorbing as the two women bring out a sense of purpose and strength in one another. In less competent hands, Yes, Peut-Etre could well run the risk of becoming too slow and
this an evocative picture of the
(venue 101), 32 Broughton Street. Until30Aug (not25 Aug)
Bopha!. a three-man play presented at the Traverse by a visiting company from South Africa. begins with a hilarious police passing out parade drill, putting into sharp focus the actors‘ astonishing abilities at parody. physicality and playfulness.
But the new recruits to the police force are black. which isn‘t so funny: ‘Ifyou can‘t beat them, join them‘ is the excuse ofone, but they are among the ugliest collaborators of the white regime. and the play deals with this most extreme form of dividied loyalties.
Bonus! Earth Player:
, . , . l The List 22 Aug— 4 Sept 5