The Comedy of Errors

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The Comedy of Errors by William Shakespeare. Much performed and studied over the years, this play was first performed in English at Gray's Inn Hall in 1594.

Performance history in South Africa

The first professional production in South Africa was performed by the touring Henry Herbert Company in 1913.

In July 1983 it was the first production in the new Wits Theatre with Ian Steadman directing Wits drama students. It featured students of the School of Music playing an especially written score by Professor Henk Temmingh.

A PACT production staged at the Alexander Theatre and the State Theatre in 1985 was directed by Janice Honeyman starring Neville Thomas, Dale Cutts, Graham Hopkins, Martin le Maitre, Frantz Dobrowsky, Russel Savadier, Maralin Vanrenen, Clare Stopford, Charlotte Butler, Peter Terry, Barry French, Billy Second, Margaret Heale, Guy de Lancey, Bruce Alexander, Gina Benjamin and Karen Going. Decor by Andrew Botha, costumes by Frances Michaletos, lighting by Stan Knight.

Directed by Ken Leach for CAPAB at Maynardville, opening on 17 January 1986. The cast: Ronald France, Bill Jervis, Michael Richard, Andrew Buckland, Mark Graham, Silamour Philander, Grethe Fox, Mary Dreyer, Paddy Canavan, Shaleen Surtie-Richards, Royston Stoffels, Gordon van Rooyen, Joseph Ribeiro, André Roothman, [[Jamie Bartlett], Louise Saint-Claire. Paul Smith, Chris Baatjies. The production was revived at the beginning of 1988, directed by Mark Graham.

Translations and adaptations

Translated into Setswana by Sol Plaatje entitled Diphosophoso (literally "Mistakes, mistakes") and published as Diphosophoso : Shakespeare's 'The Comedy of Errors'; E fetoletswe mo puong ya Setswana ke Solomon Tshekiso Plaatje. Gaberones : Botswana Book Centre, 1964. Performed at the Aardklop festival 2005, directed by Josias Moleele.

Translated and adapted into Afrikaans as Kinkels innie Kabel (="twists in the cable") by André P. Brink. It was a hugely popular adaptation to a Western Cape setting , utilizing the local regional variant of Afrikaans called "Kaaps" to good effect. See Kinkels innie Kabel.


CAPAB theatre pamphlet, 1979.

PACT theatre pamphlet, July 1981.

NAPAC News, April 1981.

Teaterforum, 4(1), 1983, 113.

Quince, 1990

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