American Players Theatre
5950 Golf Course Road
P.O. Box 819
Spring Green, WI 53588
Box Office: 608-588-2361
Though Fugard is known for his works opposing apartheid, here the great playwright tells a more personal story about the connections between playwright and actor, student and teacher, upstart and mentor. In Exits and Entrances, a young playwright and an aging actor whom he admires strike up a friendship that becomes a springboard for questions about life, art, and why we all do what we do, day in and day out, right up to old age. Needless to say, such an intimate work, with such close ties to the theater, is a more than perfect fit for the Touchstone.
This is a true story of two artists. One man dedicated to a life in theatre that would leave him penniless and alone, and another man at the beginning of a career that would make him world famous.
Andre Huguenet was an actor -manager of the old school. Renowned for his talent, he was determined to bring the great classical plays of western civilization to South Africa.
On his quest, he experienced major artistic triumphs and devastating artistic failures. A young idealistic playwright, Athol Fugard, was attempting to tell stories of the common man in order to create a new theatre – a theatre that might change the world - and he did. They first met in 1954, when both were cast in a production of Oedipus Rex.
The question of why they dedicate their lives to this art form, and the question of what theatre should be are both addressed by these men, but from two very different perspectives. Viewing the relationship between this young man emerging as a playwright and this great actor on the decline, offers an opportunity to explore what a life in the theatre means. However other themes emerge – birth and death, the relationship of fathers and sons, the nature of nationalism, youthful idealism, experienced fatalism – which all contribute to the complexity of this beautiful play.
APT is dedicated to great writers, great plays and great characters. The organization has a deep regard for the theatre artist, as do you, and the artists themselves have a deep and abiding love of the theatre and their audiences. We hope, for you, it will be as much of an entrance into why and how we do what we do, as it is an exit out of a wonderful theatre season.
- Kate Buckley