Lysistrata is a Greek comedy by Aristophanes (c.446 BC – c. 386 BC). First performed in 411 B.C., directed by the author.
Performance history in South Africa
1958: The English text by Dudley Fitts was presented by the University of Cape Town Drama Department at The Little Theatre as part of the UCT Arts Festival, directed by Johan de Meester, 3 to 13 September starring Percy Sieff as the magistrate and Elizabeth Bennett in the role of Lysistrata.
1962: Performed in the original Greek in South Africa by the Athens Drama Company, when Leon Gluckman brought them here to perform at the Civic Theatre with direction by Costis Michaelides, starring Aleka Katselis, Maria Moscholiou and Costas Kazakos.
1974: The Company did a version in the Arena Theatre, wih a text adapted and directed by Barney Simon. The cast included Aletta Bezuidenhout (Lysistrata), Jud Cornell (Kalonike), Sue Kiel (Myrrhine), Janice Honeyman (Lampito), Vanessa Cooke (A Boiotian Woman), Lindsay Reardon (Commissioner), David Eppel (Kinesias), Jon Ossher (Herald) and Danny Keogh ( Ambassador).
Late 1980s: Presented by the University of Cape Town Drama Department at the Little Theatre, directed by Marthinus Basson, starring Jennifer Woodburne, Lisa Hall, Sara Matchett, Nazli George, Anita Berk, Wilmien Rossouw, Cheryl Braaf, Judd Millner, Alistair Prodgers, Nigel Maister, Alan Glauber, Christopher Gxalaba. Set designer Reiner Leist, costume designer John Caviggia, lighting design by Anton Burggraaf.
Translations and adaptations
Miss Los Istrata is a bilingual (Afrikaans & English) adaptation of Lysistrata by Robin Malan (1972). Malan directed a production by students of the Stellenbosch University Drama Department from1 to 16 September 1972. The large cast included actors such as Dawie Malan, Johann van Heerden, Bettie Kemp, Chris Truter and many others. The music was composed by Deon Bosman.
The Afrikaans translation (Lusistrata) by J.P.J. van Rensburg was staged by the University of Stellenbosch Drama Department in the Langenhoven Student Centre in 1990. Johann van Heerden was the director.
The play has been adapted in many ways over the years. For example Dermod Judge wrote Lysistrata S.A. - based om the South African situation in the mid-70s – which was done in 1977 at The Space (Cape Town), with music composed by Alan Hayman and directed by Dorrian McLaren with sixteen actors, five musicians and a singer, including Charles Comyn, Fatima Dike, Andrea Fine, Joe Hartzenberg, Merle Lifson, Liza Mbizela, James Mthoba, Thoko Ntshinga, Sam Phillips, Jacqui Singer and others. The musicians were Ko Eckhart, Alan Hayman, Timmy Kwebulana, Ezra Ngcukana, Ray Perkel.
Helikon, 1(5):85. 1952.
Voëlvry programme notes, 1967.
Theatre programme (Rhodes 1987) NELM: [Collection: THEATRE PROGRAMMES]: 2012. 285. 1. 173.
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