Prince of Denmark
As performed by the crew aboard The Red Dragon off the east coast of South Africa, 1608.
Brought to Theatre on the Bay by Fred Abrahamse and Marcel Meyer, the creative team behind Maynardville’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in 2013 and “Othello” in 2015 and 2016!
After playing to 5 star reviews and standing ovations in Europe, Pieter Toerien proudly presents a limited season of Abrahamse & Meyer’s internationally acclaimed HAMLET in Cape Town and Johannesburg before the production sets off for a tour of the USA.
The production takes its inspiration from one of the earliest recorded performances of Hamlet, which took place during Shakespeare’s life-time.
In 1608 off the east coast of South Africa, the crew of the East India Company merchant ship, the Red Dragon, performed Hamlet aboard the vessel while at anchor. In his log of 31 March 1608, Captain Keeling noted: “I invited Captain Hawkins to a fish dinner and had Hamlet acted aboard me; which I permit to keep my people from idleness and unlawful games, or sleep.”
This production re-imagines Shakespeare’s most iconic play within the context of the historic performance aboard the Red Dragon, as a play within a play within a play, utilizing a cast of only 6 actors playing 6 Jacobean sailors who, in turn, play all the parts in Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
“From the amazing pool of water surrounding the ‘ship’ to a very real, looming spectre, the company creates a multi-sensory experience that takes an already very visceral and important classical play and imbues it with wonder and awe enough for a contemporary audience” enthused City Press journalist Binwe Adebayo when the production premiered at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown in 2015.
In 2011 respected theatre-critic Christina Kennedy wrote of Abrahamse & Meyer Productions: “It is sometimes debated – often among young people – what relevance Shakespeare has to South Africa in the here and now. This is why passionate young thespians, such as Fred Abrahamse and Marcel Meyer, who are hell-bent of making Shakespeare daring, modern, exciting and topical, deserve some sort of special award. Abrahamse and his brave young cast should be applauded for bringing a new, synapse-firing incarnation of a well-known text to local audiences.”
WEDNESDAY 12 – SATURDAY 29 APRIL 2017
Tue – Sat @ 7.30pm | Sat 22 April @ 4pm & 7.30pm
Morning and Matinee Performances: Wed 19, Thu 20 Mon 24, Tue 25, Wed 26 @ 3pm & Fri 21 April @ 11am
Running time: Two hours 40 min. First Act: 84min. Interval: 20min. Second Act: 58 mins
INDIVIDUAL TICKET PRICES
Rows A, EE and FF (EE and FF are restricted view seats): R100pp
AA 16 – 19; BB 17 – 20 and Row DD: R120pp
Rows B to J and AA 1 – 15, BB 1 -16 and CC 1 – 15: R160pp
No meal package
Tuesday to Saturday
Rows A, EE and FF (EE and FF are restricted view seats): R120pp
AA 16 – 19, BB 17 – 20 and DD 1 – 16: R150pp
Rows B to J and AA 1 – 15, BB 1 -16 and CC 1 – 15: R180pp
Dinner/Theatre Package: Inclusive of a three-course meal.
Valid in top price seats only (R255 for dinner and R155 for the show): R410pp
Book for both the theatre and the dinner through > the theatre’s Box Office on 021 438 3300 > on www.pietertoerien.co.za > any Computicket outlet > through the Computicket Call Centre on 0861 915 8000 > on www.computicket.com. A table in the restaurant can be reserved through the theatre’s Box Office on 021 438 3300, where you order a la carte from the menu and pay on the night.
Throughout the season, subject to availability of reduced price seats
All performances. In the top price seats only: Rows B to J and AA 1 – 15, BB 1 – 16 and CC 1 – 15. For 10 or more people, subject to availability of reduced price seats. Monday – R40 reduction, i.e. you pay just R120pp / Wednesday to Saturday – R50 reduction, i.e. you pay just R130pp. Contact Tracy Cahill on 021 438-3301, option 2 / email@example.com. Full house reductions on request.
60+ years. All seats. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday @ 7.30pm; Saturday @ 4pm and all school performances. HALF PRICE. Subject to availability of reduced price seats. Book at any Computicket outlet on presentation of ID. These tickets cannot be booked on-line or by ‘phone. Book for groups of twenty or more senior citizens with Tracy Cahill on 021 438 3301, option 2 / firstname.lastname@example.org.
SCHOLARS AND STUDENTS (part- and full-time and international)
Individuals: All seats. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday @ 7.30pm; Saturday @ 4pm and all school performances. HALF PRICE. Subject to availability of reduced price seats. Book through > the theatre’s Box Office 0n 021 438 3300 > any Computicket outlet > through the Computicket Call Centre on 083 915 8000. These tickets cannot be booked on-line.
Groups: All performances. All seats.
> For twenty or more scholars/students: HALF PRICE
> One teacher for every ten scholars/students: HALF PRICE
> Additional teachers/lecturers/parents providing transport (within reason): Mon – R100pp. Tue to Sat – R110pp
> Groups of teachers/lecturers only, valid for 20 or more people: R130pp
> Any extra parents pay full price or the block booking rate if booking for 20 or more people.
Book for groups of twenty or more scholars with Tracy Cahill on 021 438 3301, option 2 / email@example.com.
EXCLUSIVE BOOKS FANATICS MEMBERS
All performances. All seats. 20% REDUCTION. Book on presentation of member number at > the Theatre Box Office on 021 438 3300 > the Computicket Call Centre on 0861 915 8000 or > any Computicket outlet. These bookings cannot be made online
Tuesday to Saturday, valid in Reserve A seats only. 20% REDUCTION: R144 for R180 seats. Maximum of 6 tickets per person. Book through all Computicket channels (outlets including Shoprite/Checkers, Call Centre and online) with the code RANDGO.
GUESTS OF SUBSCRIBERS
In Rows B to J and AA 1 – 15, BB 1 -16 and CC 1 – 15. R110 for R160 seats and R130 for R180 seats. Book through the theatre’s Box Office on 021 438 3300.
Contact Tracy Cahill on 021 438 3301, option 2 / firstname.lastname@example.org for available dates and prices. 40% – 50% reduction based on the full house of 256 seats.
To be advised
“Moving and magical” – Channel 24
“World-class Shakespeare” – The Announcer
“From the amazing pool of water surrounding the ‘ship’ to a very real, looming spectre, the company creates a multi-sensory experience that takes an already very visceral and important classical play and imbues it with wonder and awe enough for a contemporary audience.” – Binwe Adebayo – City Press
Written by William Shakespeare
Adapted by Fred Abrahamse and Marcel Meyer
The production stars Marcel Meyer in the title role of HAMLET, with veteran Shakespearean actor Michael Richard taking the role of KING CLAUDIUS.
Dean Balie doubles as POLONIUS and HORATIO with Jeremy Richard as LAERTES, Matthew Baldwin as OPHELIA and Callum Tilbury in the role of QUEEN GERTRUDE.
Abrahamse & Meyer Productions in collaboration with the National Arts Festival Grahamstown, Artscape, The Market Theatre, the Fugard and the Maynardville Open-Air Theatre have produced some of the most successful Shakespeare productions in South Africa. These productions have proved immensely popular with the public, critics, school teachers and learners and have collectively garnered no less than 13 Fleur du Cap Theatre Award Nominations. In the past five years these productions have been presented in no less than 20 different seasons on two continents [Africa and Europe], in three provinces [Eastern Cape, Western Cape and Gauteng], in six cities [Grahamstown, Cape Town, Pretoria, Johannesburg, Craiova and Râmincu-Vâlcea] with further tours being set up across Europe in 2016.
Respected theatre-critic Christina Kennedy wrote: “It is sometimes debated – often among young people – what relevance Shakespeare has to SA in the here and now. This is why passionate young thespians, such as Fred Abrahamse and Marcel Meyer, who are hell-bent of making Shakespeare daring, modern, exciting and topical, deserve some sort of special award. Abrahamse and his brave young cast should be applauded for bringing a new, synapse-firing incarnation of a well-known text to local audiences.”
The Tragedy of Richard III
“Fred Abrahamse’s RICHARD III is the best mainstream production of a Shakespeare that I have seen for at least seven or eight years. An accessible, deeply engrossing production, this is by far the best-spoken Shakespeare I have seen produced in this city. It is a stunning achievement.” – Peter Tromp THE NEXT 48 HOURS
1. National Arts Festival: Main Programme 2010
2. National Schools Festival 2010
3. Artscape Arena 2011
4. Western Cape Schools Festival: Artscape Theatre 2011
5. Market Theatre, Johannesburg 2011
6. International Shakespeare Festival, Craiova – Romania 2014
7. International Shakespeare Festival tour to Râmincu-Vâlcea, Romania 2014
8. Forthcoming: Tours to UK and Germany 2017
“It should be mandatory viewing for young theatregoers. This astonishing production of ROMEO & JULIET gives courage to local theatre. This quality of young Shakespeareans on our stages refutes any belief that work ethic and skill in South Africa is dwindling. This immensely satisfying play is up there amongst the best this country has seen in a long while.” – Robyn Sassens ARTSLINK and THE JEWISH REPORT
9. National Arts Festival: Main Programme 2011
10. National Schools Festival 2011
11. Opening Production Fugard Studio Theatre 2011
12. Brooklyn Theatre, Pretoria, 2011
13. Gauteng Schools Festival, Wits Theatre 2011
14. 969 Festival, Wits Theatre 2011
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
“This production tears Shakespeare off the pages and into a riotous romp for all to enjoy. It has a freshness that will be appreciated by the Blackberry generation. Innovative set designs, sumptuously designed costumes and a highly accomplished cast ensure that both dreamers and their dreams outlast a midsummer night” – Tracey Saunders, THE CAPE TIMES
15. Artscape Theatre [Schools and Public] 2012
16. National Arts Festival: Main Programme 2012
17. National Schools Festival 2012
18. Maynardville Open-Air Theatre 2013
“Shakespeare’s Hamlet, as produced by Fred Abrahamse and Marcel Meyer, is of world-class standard and the cast of Marcel Meyer, Nicholas Dallas, Callum Tilbury, Dean Balie, Jeremy Richard and Mathew Baldwin all deserve Oscars; they are right up to the standard of those actors who perform at the Old Vic and indeed the Royal Shakespeare Company.” – Peter Grist, THE ANNOUNCER
19. National Arts Festival, Main Programme 2015
20. International Shakespeare Festival, Craiova, Romania 2016.
21. Cape Town & Johannesburg for Pieter Toerien Productions 2017.
22. USA tour 2017.
“Perfection! One of the top five Shakespeare productions this reviewer has ever seen. A wonderful evening in the theatre.” DIE BURGER
“The Abrahamse/Meyer partnership is renowned for staging award-winning epic productions in Cape Town (Desire Under The Elms,The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore and The Tragedy of Richard III to name a few) and for good reason – a show produced by this dynamic duo is bound to be done with flair and finesse, and this is once again the case with Othello.” – THEATRE SCENE, CAPE TOWN
“Helmed by the A-team of Fred Abrahamse [director] and Charl-Johan Lingenfelder [composer], with gorgeous costumes by the multi-talented Marcel Meyer who also plays Iago – Shakespeare at Maynardville is another of those quintessential Cape Town activities you should do at least once in your lifetime.” – THE WEEKEND ARGUS
“This excellent production is well worth your while. What’s more, it is a gift in its interpretation and ideal for this year’s matric learners.” – BIZZ COMMUNITY
23. Maynardville Open-Air Theatre 2015 & 2016
Fred Abrahamse graduated from UCT Drama School and started his career at The People’s Space, as a founding member of Troupe Theatre Company. He was Artistic Director of the Baxter Theatre and is also a well-respected producer and designer. His theatre involvement spans over 30 years and more than 100 professional productions including dramas, operas, musicals, cabaret and several community theatre projects.
Marcel Meyer trained in acting at the Pro Arte School and obtained his B-Tech Degree (Cum Laude) in Musical Theatre from the Pretoria Technikon and has established himself as a leading classical actor and set/costume designer.
In 2006 Abrahamse and Meyer joined forces, founding ABRAHAMSE & MEYER PRODUCTIONS. The company’s productions include the award-winning South African première of Stephen Sondheim’s Assassins; Tennessee Williams’ Kingdom of Earth, The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore, The Day on Which a Man Dies, Stairs to the Roof and One Arm; William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, The Tragedy of Richard III, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Othello, as well as the South African première of Joe Calarco’s Shakespeare’s R&J; an award-winning revival of Sir Noël Coward’s Private Lives; Eugene O’Neill’s Desire Under the Elms and the world première of two original South African musicals, In Briefs and Bangbroek Mountain.
In the past decade ABRAHAMSE & MEYER PRODUCTIONS created employment for hundreds of actors, musicians and technicians. Collectively their work has garnered 30 Fleur du Cap Theatre Award nominations and 7 wins.
ABRAHAMSE & MEYER PRODUCTIONS made their international debut in 2012 when their production of Tennessee Williams’ Kingdom of Earth opened at the 7th Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theatre Festival in the USA. The company returned to the USA in 2013 for an extended run of Kingdom of Earth at the Provincetown Theatre as well as performances of Kingdom of Earth and The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore at the 8th Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theatre Festival.
In April 2014 the company made their European debut, when their production of The Tragedy of Richard III opened to standing ovations and huge critical acclaim at the 9th International Shakespeare Festival in Romania.
In September 2014 the company returned to the USA to present Yukio Mishima’s The Lady Aoi at the Provincetown Tennessee Williams Theatre Festival and then created the hugely acclaimed first professional revival of William’s early play Stairs to the Roof in Williams’ hometown, St. Louis with an all American Theatre company. Stairs to the Roof received nominated for 4 Theatre Circle Awards in St. Louis, for Best Set Design and Best Costume Design for Meyer and Best Director for Abrahamse.
In 2015 the company was invited back to the USA to present a double bill of The Milk Train Doesn’t Stop Here Anymore and The Day on Which a Man Dies as part of the 10th anniversary Provincetown Tennessee Williams Festival.
International dates in 2016 include Hamlet at the 10th International Shakespeare Festival in Craiova and a three city tour of the USA with Desire Under the Elms.