n Shakespeare in Southern Africa - Black and white : Othello at Maynardville, 1970-2015 : Othello at Maynardville
|Article Title||Black and white : Othello at Maynardville, 1970-2015 : Othello at Maynardville|
|© Publisher:||Institute for the Study of English in Africa (ISEA)|
|Journal||Shakespeare in Southern Africa|
|Affiliations||1 University of Cape Town|
|Publication Date||Jan 2015|
|Pages||53 - 59|
In the just on sixty years over which an annual Shakespearean play has been given at the Maynardville Theatre-in-the-Park in Wynberg, Cape Town, Othello has been staged four times. I happen to have seen all four productions, and what follows is both a formal theatre history and a series of personal reflections on the play as performed in four distinct historical contexts. The first production, under the direction of Leonard Schach, was mounted in 1970, fifteen years after the opening of the theatre. This was at a time when 'granite apartheid' was in its ascendency - segregationist policies were arrogantly applied. Twelve years elapsed before Roy Sargeant's Othello, the second, was presented. By then, the country had witnessed the Soweto Uprising, MK (Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the African National Congress) was placing bombs "at many military and apartheid targets around the country" and the white leadership was rather less sure of itself.
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