Tramway Road

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Tramway Road is a play by Cape Town-born British playwright Ronald Harwood (1934-).

Original text

First performed at the Lyric Theatre, London, 23 October 1984 with Freddie Jones, Richard E. Grant, William Vanderpuye, and Annette Crosbie. The play is set in 1951, one year after the Population Registration Act was passed in South Africa. Tramway Road had a special notoriety for all those who lived in Sea Point, a white residential suburb of Cape Town. It also exerts its influence over all the characters in this play: an expatriate English couple, Arthur and Dora Langley; Emil, a young man with dreams of becoming an actor in London; and Jacob, a Cape Coloured house servant who is king of his local Coon Carnival troupe. Tramway Road, and all that it represents, inevitably shatters their hopes, their peace and their ideals. Published by Amber Lane Press, 1984.

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1985: A Baxter Company '85 production directed by Leonard Schach, presented at the Baxter Theatre was first performed on 20 March. Cast: Keith Grenville, David Dennis, Soli Philander, Brenda Wood. Design by Peter Krummeck. Lighting and assistant to the director Per-Olof Fernlund. This production was also presented by NAPAC at the Alhambra Theatre, Durban.


Tramway Road theatre programme, 1985.

Barrow, Brian & Williams-Short, Yvonne 1988.

Theatre programme for the NAPAC production held by NELM: [Collection: KORT, Maurice]: 2012. 379. 38. 16.

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