03 September 2012

Clybourne Park

CLYBOURNE PARK – the “outrageously funny” hit play that has scooped nearly every honour the theatre has to give, including the Tony Award for Best Play 2012, Olivier Award, the Evening Standard Award and the Pulitzer Prize.  

All the actors play two completely different roles – one in 1959 and the other in 2009. Here are their comments on being in this amazing play …

Nancy Brunning
Francine / Lena

“Lorraine Hansberry's 'A Raisin in the Sun' explores the American dream smashed through the eyes of a proud black family trying to make a life for themselves in Chicago in the 1950s and I was interested to see that Bruce Norris had taken characters and events from this play to explore themes of race and class - in the 50s and the present, but from a white perspective. By making connections in this way it allows you to see many sides and layers of the American unease.  I enjoy writers such as Hansberry, Norris and Letts who don't tell you how their plays should make you feel, but rather prick at your subconscious and ask you, am I like this character, do I behave in that way?”

Previous roles: Shortland St (Nurse Jaki Manu), Waiora, Blue Smoke, Awatea

Jade Daniels
Albert / Kevin

“I’m loving seeing how attitudes have changed from 50s America to 2009, and the relation to our own in NZ. Clybourne Park highlights the fact that we’ve still got some talking to do, and some of that talking gets dirty!!

Previous roles: Blood Wedding, The Arrival

Andrew Foster
Karl / Steve

Clybourne Park is brilliantly clever, and just so much fun to play. It’s a special play! There is so much depth in the writing: it's as provocative as it is hilarious. I think audiences are going to find it incredibly rewarding.”

Previous roles: God of Carnage, Ninety, Mauritius

Nikki MacDonnell
Bev / Kathy

"I love this play, it doesn’t pull any punches and it’s one of those rare combinations of depth in story and comedy, well deserving of its many prizes. How could I turn down a part in a play that’s won a Pulitzer and a Tony Award, and become Sea Scout Leader, in the same month! You’d grab these opportunities with both hands, right?"

Previous roles: Paua, The December Brother, Sex Drive

Danielle Mason
Betsy / Lindsey

Clybourne Park is unapologetically provocative. It has all the ingredients for a fantastic night of theatre. The audience are sure to be thrilled by the snappy dialogue and outrageous twists and turns – prepare for the unexpected!”

Previous roles: Red Riding Hood, Betrayal, The Motor Camp

Gavin Rutherford
Gavin Rutherford
Russ / Dan

Clybourne Park is an hilariously funny, explosive smash hit comedy from the US which exposes our 21st century prejudices by juxtaposing them with 1950s’ prejudices. We watch the intolerance and bigotry of an American community in the 1950s and laugh at the misunderstandings and blatancy of their racism; but the play really comes into its own when we see a 'modern' liberal meeting break down into pettiness and intolerance with laugh-out-loud consequences. It is one of my favourite experiences as an actor to have fun with flawed characters, and this play has them in spades. Also, there is a shovel in the play.”

Previous roles: Le Sud, West End Girls, All My Sons

Paul Waggott
Jim / Tom

“This script is absolutely hilarious and with the cast assembled, I'm having a whale of a time. I can't wait to share the laughs with audiences in Wellington!”

Previous roles: Death and the Dreamlife of Elephants, West End Girls, Eight.

Clybourne Park opens on 8 September in Circa One and runs until 6 October. Tickets are available now - contact the Circa Box Office on 801-7992 or go online at www.circa.co.nz.

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