Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Ellerslie Theatrical Society presents: Present Laughter


Ellerslie Theatrical Society presents
Present Laughter
by Noel Coward
directed by David Blakey

14 to 23 March 2013

A renowned actor who performs continuously - whether on or off the stage - runs into problems with an aspiring actress, an obsessive writer and the attentions of the partner of one of his friends. These come on top of his dawning discovery that he is still in love with his own partner, from whom he is separated. And, to crown it all, he's about to go on tour in New Zealand. Noel Coward's play is brought spectacularly into the twenty-first century with a state-of-the-art story of marriage and morality.

there is sharp-writing, skill, intriguing characters and complicated situations written with style.” ~ The Passionate Playgoers

DIRECTORS VIEW

Present Laughter is probably the greatest of Noel Coward’s plays. When it opened in 1942, reviews included the Manchester Guardian: ‘One is tempted to cast discretion to the winds and predict that this will be remembered as the best comedy of its kind and generation...one of those rare occasions when the critic must claim the privilege of his fellow-playgoers, simply to marvel, admire, and enjoy wholeheartedly.’ Sadly some characters and business in Present Laughter are meaningless or even negative to modern audiences. I wanted to transform the play into one that would make audiences in 2013 laugh as much as audiences had laughed in 1942. I believe that my interpretation keeps the spirit of the play and revives it for modern audiences.
As an actor, I have appeared in other Noel Coward plays, and I have never been really happy that each of those plays were staged as if the action was taking place in the year in which the play was first staged. Placing Blithe Spirit in 1941 or South Sea Bubble in 1951 makes them period pieces; I think that this is unfair, because Coward’s characters and situations can appeal to modern audiences. Many of the plays – and this is especially true of Present Laughter – can be brought up to date without taking away anything that would appeal to a modern audience.

In many of Coward’s plays, the principal characters – and especially the male leads – are not very nice people – or, rather, they would not be thought of as very nice today. It was one of my aims to make Garry Essendine a likeable man; he does have a tendency to overact and to lecture other people, but I wanted to make him behave like that without his having any nasty intent. On the whole, the Garry in my Present Laughter is a likeable man. At the end of play, I hope that audiences will be happy for him.

PHOTOGRAPHS (larger images available for publication – black & white and colour versions attached)
Morris phones Jo – (left to right) – Peter Boyes, Barrie Graham, Pip Simonian
Jo doesn’t answer – Peter Boyes, Barrie Graham, Pip Simonian

PERFORMANCE DATES
Thursday 14 to Saturday 16 March 2013 at 8pm
Sunday 17 March at 2pm
Tuesday 19 to Friday 22 March 8pm
Saturday 23 March at 2pm and 8pm

BOOKINGS
iTICKET – www.iticket.co.nz or phone 09 361 1000 (booking fee/delivery fee will apply)

TICKETS
Evening $22, $20 (discounted)
Matinee $16, $13 (discounted)

VENUE
Stables Theatre (Ellerslie War Memorial Community Centre, Cnr Main Highway & Arthur St, Ellerslie, Auckland


Click for big version.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

TV3 Video: Auckland Arts Festival Kicks Off

The Auckland Arts Festival kicks off March 4, with artists from New Zealand and all over the world on show. More>>

ALSO:

Te Matatini: Minister Applauds National Kapa Haka Festival

Education Minister Hekia Parata wishes the best of luck to everyone involved in this week’s national kapa haka festival, Te Matatini, in Christchurch. “Te Matatini showcases the very best of Māori performing arts talent. It’s a celebration of identity, language and culture at the highest level and I’m looking forward to being amongst it,” says Ms Parata. More>>

ALSO:

Kiwi Pride: Accolades For Film About Man Who Falls In Love With A Stick

A short animated film written and directed by New Zealand born Matthew Darragh has been selected for the Courts des îles, International Festival of Short Fiction Films. More>>

ALSO:

Anniversaries: Vivid Memories Four Years After Christchurch Quake

Four years ago, an earthquake that would change the lives of thousands shook Christchurch at 12.51 p.m. More>>

ALSO:

Environment 'n' Conservation: Slash Meets Tāne The Tuatara

Rock and Roll superstar and former Guns 'n' Roses guitarist Slash visited Zealandia Ecosanctuary along with collaborating band Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators. More>>

Canterbury Quakes: Feedback Sought On Short-Listed Memorial Designs

Six short-listed designs for the Canterbury Earthquake Memorial have been released for public input... The Memorial will honour the victims of Canterbury’s earthquakes and acknowledge the suffering of all those who lived through them as well as the heroism of those who participated in the rescue and recovery operations. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news