Our Town/Ons Dorp

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Our Town/Ons Dorp is an adaptation by Robert Mohr in a bilingual version (English and Afrikaans) of Our Town (1938) by American playwright and novelist Thornton Wilder [1] (1897-1975).

The original text

Wilder met Mohr in New England and personally allowed him to set Our Town in a Boland setting and adapt the text for a South African audience. The play deals with the values and longings of the human heart and spirit.

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1959: Mohr produced the adapted play in 1959 for the University of Stellenbosch's Arena '59. The cast: André Walters, Emile Aucamp, Roelf Laubscher, Esther van Ryswyk, Marie Smit, Ian Ferguson, Melanie Erasmus, Marcel Frank, Elma Marais, Johan de Plessis, Albert Coetser, Wenda Oosthuizen, Isabel Combrink, Jennifer Alt, Johan Conradie, Charlotte Pretorius, Ernst Eloff, Irma Braasch, Elsabé Bonthuys, Damaris Loubser.

1976: A PACOFS production was directed by Jannie Gildenhuys, starring Pierre Knoesen, Margi Lewis and others.

1985: A production for the Standard Bank National Schools' Festival, Grahamstown was directed by Trevor Hicks.

1988: It was presented by Universiteitsteater Stellenbosch in May 1988 as a tribute to Mohr after his death (in 1984), directed by Esther van Ryswyk, starring Limpie Basson, Marie de Kock and Emile Aucamp who were all involved in the 1959 production. Other cast members were Noël Roos, Marga van Rooy, Marchand de Kok, etc.

Sources

Arena '59 theatre programme 1959.

UTS Theatre programme, 1988.

PACOFS Drama 25 Years, 1963-1988.

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