The Alchemist

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The Alchemist by Ben Jonson (1573?-1637). Written in 1610.

Performance history in South Africa

First performed in South Africa in 18*

1952: Performed by the University Players in 1952, directed by Minna Millsten, starring Arnold Quin, Basil Warner, Sheila Steafel, Teddy Hinwood.

1970: Presented by the University of Cape Town’s Speech and Drama Department at the Little Theatre in June, directed by Mavis Taylor.

1975: In March 1975 it was directed for CAPAB English Drama Company by Leonard Schach, as part of the first Cape Town Festival, and coincidentally formed part of the "second opening" of the Nico Malan Theatre, now open to all races. The first performance was 1 March 1975. Decor by Arieh Navon and costumes by Lucia Metsch-Sestopali. In the cast were Michael Atkinson, David Crichton, Vivienne Drummond, Kerry Jordan, Simon Swindell, John Whiteley, Roland Stafford, Henry Goodman, Bill Jervis, Colin Duell, Peter Krummeck, Marion Achber, John Giese, David Salton, Alan Prior, Kathleen Lee. This production was also presented at the Port Elizabeth Opera House (25-29 March), the Settlers Memorial Theatre in Grahamstown (1 and 2 April), the Guild Theatre in East London (4 and 5 April) and the H.B. Thom Theatre (9-12 April 1975).

Translations and adaptations


Helikon, 1(5):90-91. 1952.

Inskip, 1972. p.155.

The Alchemist theatre programme, 1975.

Inskip, 1977. p 126.

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