Heavenly Cast Marks Swansong for Silo Director
Heavenly Cast Marks Swansong for Silo Director
ANGELS IN AMERICA
March 21 – 13 April 2014
Since becoming Artistic Director of Silo thirteen years ago, Shane Bosher has long dreamt about directing Tony Kushner’s Angels in America. As he prepares to leave this position, his dream has become a reality. From March 21 Angels in America comes to Auckland, marking the first time that this iconic two-parter has ever been performed in its entirety in New Zealand.
Angels in America brings together one of the strongest casts Silo has assembled in recent years - Mia Blake (No. 2, Tartuffe), Alison Bruce (Top of the Lake, Speaking in Tongues), Stephen Lovatt (Top of the Lake, When The Rain Stops Falling), Gareth Reeves (War Horse, 360), Dan Musgrove (Holding the Man, Underbelly, Midsummer), Jarod Rawiri (The Arrival, Harry, The Brothers Size), Chelsie Preston Crayford(Underbelly: Razor, That Face) and Matt Minto (Home and Away, The Blue Rose).
Winning a Pulitzer and pair of Tony Awards, with numerous international restagings and a multi-award winning HBO adaptation in 2003, Angels in America’s critical evaluation has always been superlative and sincere, with many hailing the work as one of the greatest plays of the twentieth century.
Premiering in 1993, the production revealed a brutal depiction of life in the capitalistic 1980’s. Whilst being applauded for its exploration of social issues it conversely caused unrest from conservative groups who were blindsided by its frank treatment of homosexuality, drug addiction, religion and AIDS. This coupled with male nudity – albeit brief, was enough to create widespread controversy and protests. This work was a game changer and its cultural impact was phenomenal.
A sombre work, however, this is not. Fundamentally, this is a story about love, compassion and hope, which has stood the test of time. Dramatic, heroic, hilarious and daring, Angels In America captured a zeitgeist of the 1980s which translates to the current day all too readily. It’s about people moving toward an uncertain future, so in a period of financial crisis and climate change, it’s a timely revival.
This resonating work is a fitting farewell for Shane Bosher – an Artistic Director that serves to create dialogue between traditional theatre audiences, the mainstream and counter-culture. Bosher’s tenure at Silo has consistently pushed the envelope regarding real-world issues.
For those who are well practised in the art of digesting TV box sets in single-day sittings, both parts will be performed back-to-back every weekend from March 29 for a truly epic, world-shifting experience. Alternatively, audiences can experience each part independently.
“It ranks as nothing less than one of the greatest plays of the twentieth century.” THE NEW YORK OBSERVER
ANGELS IN AMERICA plays
PART ONE: MILLENNIUM APPROACHES: 21, 22, 25, 26, 27 March, 1, 3, 8, 10 April
PART TWO: PERESTROIKA: 28 March, 2, 4, 9, 11 April.
COMBINED PERFORMANCES: 29, 30 March, 5, 6, 12 and 13 April
Book both parts together and save big with Silo’s Double Feature deal
Q Theatre, 305 Queen Street, Auckland
Tickets: $35 - $65 (service fees apply)
Bookings: Q Theatre – www.qtheatre.co.nz or 09 309 9771
ANGELS IN AMERICA - Appendices
A Gay Fantasia on National Themes
For more on Tony Kushner visit: http://www.jbactors.com/actingreading/playwrightbiographies/tonykushner.html
ONE: MILLENNIUM APPROACHES
It's 1985. Reagan is backing a culture of ruthless self-interest. The cold war is ending. The ozone layer is melting. New Yorkers are learning how to survive a plague. It's at this tipping point that the great work begins.
Prior has big news. And his firebrand leftie boyfriend isn’t coping with it. Harper is popping pills as fast as she can; her husband is wrestling with truth versus reality. Roy is ravaged by sickness but clinging on to corruption.
Told with exuberance, wit, energy and an almost apocalyptic sense of play, Tony Kushner’s wild fantasia carries the audience headlong through an astonishing theatrical landscape populated by communists, capitalists, Mormons, rabbis, mothers, homos and ghosts.
Great plays always have something to say to us. This one has the pulse of the urgent present. It is dramatic. It is hilarious. It is a melodrama. It is a soap opera. It is heroic. It is daring. It is human. It is all of the things.
And that’s only half of the story.
PART TWO: PERESTROIKA
Righto. So Part One finished with a doozy of a cliffhanger.
Something called God created humankind to stir things up a bit, then went AWOL. An angel has come crashing through a ceiling and told Prior that it’s up to him to save the world. Wrapped up in the kind of Jewish guilt that would make even Woody Allen skedaddle, Louis is continuing his own form of moral masochism. Harper is touring the Antarctic, courtesy of Valium Airlines. And everyone else? They’re developing an addiction for being alive. They all want more life. As Tony Kushner himself puts it, the world only spins forward.
ANGELS IN AMERICA is Shane’s parting shot of humour, beauty, pain and love. It’s an epic celebration, pitched from a horizon of hopefulness. We dare you not to be uplifted. In this, his wings are fully extended.