ON STAGE NOW: 'Master Harold…and the Boys' marks the start of the Fugard Theatre’s 2020 season

Kai Luke Brummer, Siya Mayola, and Desmond Dube in 'Master Harold...and the Boys'. (Photo: Claude Barnardo)
Kai Luke Brummer, Siya Mayola, and Desmond Dube in 'Master Harold...and the Boys'. (Photo: Claude Barnardo)

A star-studded cast was announced for a new Fugard Theatre production of Athol Fugard’s masterpiece Master Harold…and the Boys which marks the start of the Fugard Theatre’s 2020 season and tenth birthday year.

Presented by Eric Abraham and The Fugard Theatre, Master Harold…and the Boys is currently running in the Fugard Studio Theatre.

The production is directed by the Fugard Theatre’s Artistic Director Greg Karvellas. The cast features Kai Luke Brummer as Hally, Desmond Dube as Sam and Siya Mayola as Willie.

Brummer is the lead in Oliver Hermanus’ new film Moffie which was invited to the Venice and London International Film Festivals and has been critically acclaimed across Europe. Moffie goes on general release in South Africa on 13 March 2020 with a premiere at The Fugard Theatre.

Set in a tea room in Port Elizabeth on a dreary, wet afternoon in 1950, Master Harold…and the Boys is a poignant coming of age story and exploration of a friendship between a young white boy (Hally), and the two adult black men he has grown up around (Sam and Willy), against the backdrop of the oppressive, divisive apartheid laws of the time.

Although society dictates their education are worlds apart, Sam has helped guide Hally from boy to manhood, educating him about the realities and injustices of the world, while Hally in turn teaches Sam what he has learnt at school.

Their friendship has taken on an almost fatherly role for Hally, as he struggles with the strained relationship with his alcoholic father. 

During their debates and reminiscing on the rainy afternoon, Sam and Willy talk about their dreams of winning a ball room competition - their ‘world without collisions’ - a metaphor for their aspirations and yearning to create a better life for themselves. The peace is broken with the news Hally’s drunken father is returning home, unleashing an anger in Hally that leads to an unprecedented bigoted outburst.

The play is a compelling and masterful examination of the frailty of the human condition and how societal injustices force people into their prescribed roles.

Master Harold…and the Boys will be performed in The Fugard Studio Theatre from Tuesday to Saturdays at 20:00 with matinees on Saturday and Sundays at 15:00.

Tickets from R180 to R250 can be booked through The Fugard Theatre box office on 021 461 4554 or through The Fugard Theatre’s website.