• Dean Kotze

#CTFringe17 - Thirst

The Sugar Daddy Theatre Company presents Thirst at the Cape Town Fringe. The production came about through the creative mind of the Nobel prize winning playwright, Eugene O' Neill, It is seen as a metaphor for life, something very basic yet effective.

The production is directed by Sue Diepeveen and features Marlisa Cooper-Doubell and Pope Jerrod. The story goes back about a century ago and revolves around three very desperate characters who have been left stranded on a raft with the ultimate focus on surviving the tough as well as braving the harshest weather conditions along with a desperate need for water.

The Sugar Daddy Theatre Company was established in 2010 under the leadership of Marlisa Doubell, alongside a group of actors, who have been inspired to create more independent theatre in and around Cape Town. The founding members include: Yvonne Copley, Patrick Walton , Tamryn Spiers, Sabine Palfi, Leon Clingman, Bjorn Steinbach, Claire Verstraete, Gavin Werner, Lizanne Peters and Aidan Whytock

Their aim is to create innovative as well as inspiring theatre that will appeal to both the cultural going as well as the wider Cape Town audiences. All of this has been made possible through profit-sharing as well as acquiring sponsorship.

In some way or another, Capetonians will be able to relate to this story. The production also commemorates the life of O'Neill, who will soon be celebrating the 130th birthday of Eugene O' Neill. Thirst was said to be the very first play that Eugene has created and it was due to the tragedy of the Titanic that he was inspired to create this gripping yet brilliant show piece.

Aboard a lonely raft drifting somewhere in the Northern Atlantic ocean, a dancer (Doubell) together with a gentleman (Jerrod) are seen stranded on a raft, perspiring and reaching the dire stages of dehydration and hypertension. The chemistry between these two actors is phenomenal and one can easily sense this right from the beginning of the production. They immediately manage to draw the audience in as the story progresses. Their breathing, along with their movements, are laboured. Diepeveen's version of this story depicts the Dancer and the Gentleman talking to and at the "sailor" - although there is no third actor present in the production.

These characters are seen going from having no hope at all to giving up, to feeling extremely overcome with sadness and desperation. The dancer then takes things up a notch or two when she decides to offer herself to the sailor, bravely and daringly so, in exchange for a simple drink of water. Although these characters are trapped in severe circumstances, they manage to break out a laugh or two from the audience, in certain moments throughout the story.

This mind-blowing production presents a brief insight into the minds of two disheveled souls, and it is bound to leave audiences feeling THIRSTY and on guard, ready to fend off anyone who gets in the way of you and being able to acquire your drink once you have left the theatre.

This production has one performance left at the Masque Theatre on Sunday 29 October 2017. Book tickets at www.masquetheatre.co.za.

#Thirst #SugarDaddyTheatreCompany #MarlisaDoubell #PopeJerrod #CapeTownFringe #ArtsFestival #CTFringe17 #Drama #CapeTownTheatre #festival #Stranded

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