By Dennis Walder (auth.)
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Extra resources for Athol Fugard
5 It remained for whites such as Fugard to exploit the rich upsurge of talent before drama in the modern European sense could begin to emerge. There was a good deal of urban entertainment, performed in the few available school or church halls by such groups as the Manhattan Brothers or the Woody Woodpeckers, whose musical performances often included satirical, topical sketches. But inexperience and restrictions meant that black musicians and performers had to rely on white impresarios to manage and promote them, men such as Ike Brooks and Alfred Herbert (the latter's 'African Jazz and Variety Show' ran for fourteen years), who encouraged them to play in 'white' venues, since that was where the money was.
Do what? WILLIE. That! Why do they co me here, like that! HIGGINS. He only wants to live, Willie .... WILLIE. HIGGINS. The moment is visually arresting, a gesture, an image which resonates through the play. If any single moment· in No-Good Friday can be said to sum up dramatically wh at it is about, it is this one. Significantly, the image reappears, fourteen years later, inSizwe Bansi ls Dead, when the shy, uncertain and unsophisticated Robert Zwelinzima arrives at Styles's studio for the 'snap' he wishes to send back to his wife in the Ciskei Bantustan.
His help in being the 'third eye' on The Blood Knot was invaluable. In March 1962 the final (140th) performance of the play took place in New Brighton, Port Elizabeth. The following year it was 25 Athol Fugard launched at the New Arts Theatre, Hampstead, London, with Zakes Mokae and lan Bannen, directed by John Berry. In 1964 Berry directed it at the Cricket Theatre, New York, with James Earl Jones and J. D. Cannon. The New York Times voted it the best play of the year. Fugard's international career had begun.
Athol Fugard by Dennis Walder (auth.)