The Slave

Revision as of 06:34, 20 June 2017 by Satj (talk | contribs) (→‎Translations and adaptations)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The Slave is a musical drama in three acts by Thomas Morton (1764 – 1838).

The original text

First performed at Covent Garden, 12 November, 1816, as The Slave with Macready as of "Gambia".

Translations and adaptations

In his discussion of a South African performance of the play, Bosman (1928, p. 224) uses the title The Slave, or The Revolt of Surinam. The interesting sub-title suggests he (or his source materials) may have been referring to another work (if only for the title), namely the play in which Ira Aldridge (1807–1867)[1], made his London debut (under the stage name "Keene") at London's Royal Coburg Theatre, on October 10, 1825: The Revolt of Surinam, or A Slave's Revenge. According to articles on Aldridge, this was an adaptation from Oroonoko: A Tragedy by Thomas Southerne (in its turn based on the novel Oroonoko by Aphra Behn - 1640–1689), and had originally been staged staged in 1695. No indication who had done the adaptation.

However, there are no indications in the sources nor in the text that Morton's musical play was derived directly from the Southerne's work or any other, for the plot differs as do the characters, but it was undoubtedly influenced by "slave plays" such Oroonoko and similar works which were popular at the time.

Performance history in South Africa

1832: Performed in Cape Town under the title The Slave, or The Revolt of Surinam by the All the World's a Stage in The Cape Theatre on 20 October, with Lovers' Quarrels, or Like Master Like Man (King).

Translations and adaptations


F.C.L. Bosman. 1928. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel I: 1652-1855. Pretoria: J.H. de Bussy. [2]: pp.

Go to ESAT Bibliography

Return to

Return to PLAYS I: Original SA plays

Return to PLAYS II: Foreign plays

Return to PLAYS III: Collections

Return to PLAYS IV: Pageants and public performances

Return to South African Festivals and Competitions

Return to The ESAT Entries

Return to Main Page