Six Degrees of Separation

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Six Degrees of Separation is a 1990 play written by American playwright John Guare (born 5 February 1938) [1]. The play explores the existential premise that everyone in the world is connected to everyone else in the world by a chain of no more than six acquaintances, thus, "six degrees of separation". The plot of the play was inspired by the real-life story of David Hampton, a con man who managed to convince a number of people in the 1980s that he was the son of actor Sidney Poitier. After the play became a dramatic and financial success, Hampton was tried and acquitted for harassment of Guare; he felt he was due a share of the profits that he ultimately never received.

The original text

Premiered at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater, Lincoln Center, on May 16, 1990, directed by Jerry Zaks and starring Stockard Channing.

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1991-1992: Presented by Pieter Toerien Productions at the Alhambra Theatre opening 4 October 1991 directed by Robert Whitehead starring Fiona Ramsay (Ouisa) and Graham Hopkins (Flan), Guy de Lancey (Geoffrey; Detective), Pat Pillai (Paul), Alain Benatar (Hustler; Trent), Vanessa Cooke (Kitty), Jonathan Taylor (Larkin), Janine Eser (Tess), Bruce Laing (Woody), Simon Jones (Ben; Rick), Robert Colman (Dr Fine), Joshua Lindberg (Doug), Leila Henriques (Elizabeth). Lighting design by Jannie Swanepoel, set design by Anne Carghill, costumes co-ordinated by Colleen Moabelo. This production opened at the Theatre on the Bay on 20 January 1992.


Six Degrees of Separation theatre programme, 1992.

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