| The Colonel Bird at the Arena Theatre
The Colonel Bird
By Hristo Boytchev
Directed by: Christopher Weare
Arena Theatre: 15 – 24 May 2008. (No Show on Monday 19th May 2008)
Ticket price: R50 (Students R35)
Bookings: 021 480 7129 / email@example.com
The Colonel Bird is a politicized One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, subverting all our conventional definitions of madness. War in Kosovo in the 1990s gave Bulgarian writer Hristo Boytchev’s comic satire on Balkan politics a timely edge. Set in the Balkans, a doctor who is probably not a doctor, arrives at a derelict monastery where six mental patients have been abandoned.
The Colonel Bird is a telling comedy about these six inmates who declare that their forgotten ‘convent’ is an independent territory, and they appoint themselves as a “UN fighting force”. Their pitiful illusion sustains them all the way to the UN building in Strasbourg. The harmlessly insane clients include an impotent gypsy, a mute Russian, a deaf actress and an ex-whore who wants to be like Mother Teresa.
Christopher Weare, responsible for the superb production of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead last year (for which he received a Best Director Fleur Du Cap nomination 2007), directs this intriguing play, teaming up once again with Lighting Designer Daniel Galloway, in which Boytchev’s view of all forms of Balkan authority seems to be, “same asylum, different lunatics.” Boytchev has a similarly cynical attitude to the effectiveness of peace-keepers.
The winner of the British Council’s International Playwriting Award in 1997, this comedy makes a timely debut in South Africa.
Where does true sanity reside? In the asylum or the outer world?
The Colonel Bird is performed by senior students at UCT Drama School and runs for a short season at the Arena Theatre, 37 Orange Street, Gardens. The season is from 15 May to 24 May at 8.30pm (No Show on Monday 19th May 2008). Tickets cost R50 (Students R35).
Bookings can be made by calling 021 480 7129 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Enquire about reduced prices if booking for the UCT season of The Colonel Bird and Attempts On Her Life (Directed by Liz Mills; Little Theatre 17 – 24 May 2008, 20h00)
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