Dear friends and other interesting creatures,
I would invite you to join us tomorrow evening, Tuesday 24 March 2015 for a special evening of Social Media buz around Crazy In Love using #CrazyLoveJHB as your guide. We are thrilled to be invited to participate in getting crazy in love!
Joburg – get ready to go CRAZY IN LOVE
Powerful, passionate and desperate – after winning over the festival fringe circuit in South Africa and abroad, the multiple award-winning production CRAZY IN LOVE hits Jozi.
CRAZY IN LOVE is the tragicomic story of a father-daughter search for a missing bride and mother. Devised and performed by the inspirational pairing of Andrew Buckland and Liezl de Kock, CRAZY IN LOVE is presented by A Conspiracy of Clowns in association with the Market Theatre, under the direction of Rob Murray, with design by Jayne Batzofin.
When the independent and free-spirited Leon (Buckland) is abandoned at the altar by his bride to be, he is left literally holding the baby. From his grief comes a solemn resolve: to travel the country with his infant daughter, Ginny (De Kock), until he finds his lost love and pieces his family back together. His quest quickly becomes an obsession, and at each town they don’t find her, he tattoos that town name on his skin. It is now fifteen years later. Ginny is coming of age and starting to realise the desire to achieve her own independence, while Leon has retreated into alcoholism and despair – his body a roadmap of tattoos. As their individual obsessions spiral out of control, and they become lost in their own personal routines and mythologies, a massive shift in their relationship is imminent – if they have the courage and conviction to break out of their own cycles.
“This piece CRAZY IN LOVE is a basket full of such exciting elements. Andrew Buckland, Rob Murray and Liezl de Kock. It is an award-winning production that is going to wow Joburg audiences,” says James Ngcobo, artistic director of The Market Theatre.
CRAZY IN LOVE has created a significant impression on the fringe festival circuit, where it won the Best International Production at 2014 Amsterdam Fringe Festival and the Standard Bank Ovation Award at 2013 National Arts Festival Fringe. It was also the top selling show on debut at 2013 National Arts Festival Fringe·and at the inaugural Cape Town Fringe Festival 2014, and was a box office success at Witness Hilton Arts Festival in 2013.
This is the fourth work created by the “open door collective” that is A Conspiracy of Clowns. Other works it has produced have been the smash hit Pictures of You (multi Fleur du Cap winner and top selling 2009 theatre production on the National Arts Festival Fringe), Kardiāvale (the cult cabaret clown noir show created under Jayne Batzofin and first presented on the National Arts Festival Arena Programme in 2011), and Benchmarks (first presented, in association with FTH:K, on the 2011 National Arts Festival Main Programme and then at Out the Box where it won a Handspring Puppet Company Award).
“Liez and Andrew are fantastic together on stage, which we discovered in 2012 creating Through Blue for Ubom!” says director Rob Murray. “The kind of stage chemistry they tap into is very rare and one we couldn’t ignore, so looked for the vehicle to best provoke that.”
“I’ve always been fascinated by deceptively small human stories that tell a much larger archetypal tale,” says Murray. “And two that have always stuck with me have been James (Cuningham) and Helen’s (Iskander) Baobabs don’t grow here and John Wright’s On the verge of exploding. In many ways CRAZY IN LOVE pays homage to these, as well as existing in its own right, in the telling of a very moving and hilarious tale. I guess the scale of it makes it a form of road-movie theatre.”
Design has always featured prominently in Conspiracy works. “We were very fortunate to get Jayne Batzofin to come play with us,” enthuses De Kock, “And she has really made the world come alive. From the gritty day to day life of Dad and Ginny’s journey with their junk trolley to Ginny’s obsessive, almost fetishist, shrine to her missing mother – Jayne has given us so many toys to play with!”
In 2013, the original creation of CRAZY IN LOVE was supported by the Eastern Cape Provincial Arts and Culture Council as well as some support from the National Arts Council of South Africa. In 2014, CRAZY IN LOVE was taken to the Amsterdam Fringe Festival thanks to support from the National Arts Festival and Amsterdam Fringe Festival. Also in 2014, the Rhodes University Drama Department supported CRAZY IN LOVE to get to Cape Town Fringe Festival.
With the stellar pedigree of Murray, Buckland, de Kock, and Batzofin, CRAZY IN LOVE looks forward to its premiere season in Johannesburg at the Barney Simon Theatre from 24 March to 12 April 2015.
Performances are Tuesday to Saturday night at 20h15, with tickets ranging from R90-R180, and Sundays at 15:15, with tickets up to R130. Bookings are through Computicket with special rates for students/learners, block bookings, and pensioners.
The production is not suitable for children and is rated 16 for violence and language.
The performance runs at 65 minutes with no interval. Tickets are available at Computicket.
Created and written by Rob Murray, Andrew Buckland, and Liezl de Kock
Performed by Andrew Buckland and Liezl de Kock
Directed by Rob Murray
Set and Prop Design by Jayne Batzofin
Lighting Design by Rob Murray
KA “Ugli Bob”, Rob Murray has worked with award-winning companies such as from the hip: khulumakahle (FTH: K), Ubom! Eastern Cape Theatre Company, and is presently co-artistic director of the collective, A Conspiracy of Clowns. He has racked up a number of original, innovative, physical and visual creations and in 2010 was nominated as one of 25 theatre makers internationally for the prestigious Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative. Currently, Rob is putting in the hard yards towards his PhD, doing groundbreaking work in South African Visual Theatre, as well as developing a new performance group Uyabona Ke – See What I Mean?
Liezl de Kock has cemented herself as a versatile, sought-after and multi award winning performer in South Africa. As co-artistic director of A Conspiracy of Clowns, she has performed in all their works to date – Pictures of You, Kardiavale, Benchmarks, and now CRAZY IN LOVE, as well as all the Deaf and hearing integrated works of FTH:K, being nominated for the Fleur du Cap Best Actress Award for her role as the mother in Rob Murray’s Womb Tide. Liezl was also mentioned in The Sunday Times as one of the best actresses of 2010 in South Africa. Most recently she scooped a Standard Bank Silver Ovation Award for her solo work Piet se Optelgoed, which won the hearts and minds of the critics at Cape Town Fringe Festival, and has been invited to the Amsterdam Fringe in 2015.
Since 1981, Andrew Buckland has been producing original theatre work of a consistently very high standard which is clearly seen to be at the forefront of theatre developments in South Africa. Employing a dynamic and exciting combination of visual comedy, sophisticated political satire, clowning, physical theatre, mime and an explosive performance style, the works of Andrew Buckland have become synonymous with provocative, entertaining and stimulating theatre both nationally and internationally. His original plays have won a total of 20 national and international theatre awards including several for best performance, best script, best production and play of the year. Most recently he has received rave reviews for his performance in Blue/Orange at The Baxter, and appeared in Sylvaine Strike’s Tobacco, and the Harmful Effects Thereof, which wowed the National Arts Festival and has been invited to the Amsterdam Fringe in 2015.
Jayne Batzofin graduated from the University of the Witwatersrand, BADA (Honours): majoring in directing and stage and costume design. She pursued her studies at L’EcoleInternationale deThéâtre Jacques Lecoq. In 2009, she moved to Cape Town to work with the deaf and hearing integrated theatre company: FTH:K; as a performer, designer and director. In 2011, in collaboration with A Conspiracy of Clowns, she created her signature Cabaret Clown Noir spectacle, Kardiàvale. Since then her work has become known for its “Batzofin Bite”. In 2013 she received the KANNA for her latest show, PruTTeL, which won Best Debut Production at the Absa KKNK. Jayne is known as a wanderer and wonderer as she continues to delve into the dark and disorderly world of the everyday.
About A Conspiracy Of Clowns
In essence, it is an “open-door collective” of professional theatre makers made up of a flexible number of clowns/directors/ designers/physical performers/writers nationwide. A Conspiracy of Clowns is geared towards promoting a collaborative approach to creating high concept, high production value, and original theatre work with a particular focus on alternative approaches to making theatre in the field of clowning, Visual Theatre, image theatre, puppetry, and contemporary devised performance.
Works to date include the multiple award-winning Pictures Of You, the cabaret clown noir piece Kardiāvale that premiered on the 2011 National Arts Festival Arena Programme, and the Handspring Puppet award-winning Benchmarks (in association with FTH:K) that premiered on the 2011 National Arts Main Festival. A Conspiracy of Clowns is also associated with Liezl de Kock’s Standard Bank Silver Ovation Award-winning Piet se Optelgoed.
Press quotes for CRAZY IN LOVE:
“… intuitive and insightful… It is not only the actors who offer the CRAZY IN LOVE its expressive coherence. The remarkable direction of Rob Murray successfully unearths the savage comedy of this play as much as he pays articulate attention to the performances, pacing, and the use of space…Above and beyond its accolade and its array of acclaimed industry players, CRAZY IN LOVE is a must-see production that succeeds in offering a remarkable visual impact with real physical swagger” – WHATSONINCAPETOWN.COM
“The synergy between Buckland and De Kock on stage is profound and mesmerising and they keep you spellbound until the final breath.” –CAPE TIMES
“CRAZY IN LOVE will speak to anyone who’s refused to accept the hand that fate has dealt them. If you’re looking for a compelling original story told with outstanding flair, Crazy’s your sure thing. Seats are, quite rightly, selling out for these shows. Catch yours while you can.” – DAILY MAVERICK
“The dream-like quality of the work and the almost child-like return of imagination, made the jury sometimes feel that Alice was back in Wonderland. CRAZY IN LOVE puts the ‘playing man’ back in the centre of the play and the performers are absolutely beautiful, creating a unique universe with the seemingly simplest of gestures. The set is ingeniously constructed out of a wide range of attributes that can be transformed into a hut to sleep in, a shrine for the dead or your worst childhood monster nightmare.” – AMSTERDAM FRINGE FESTIVAL JURY
“Outstanding show…Highly impressive for its vision, its realisation on stage through a pitch perfect combination of physical and verbal theatre and interplay, CRAZY IN LOVE has to be one of the must-see shows at the Amsterdam Fringe.” – Paul Levy, FRINGE REVIEW (UK)
“Andrew Buckland, as the alcoholic father of Liezl de Kock, plumbs the depths of his condition in a relentless but wholly credible account of derelicts on the road. Buckland’s acting is superb and de Kock an excellent foil. A word of caution: viewing could be extremely painful for anyone with family members so afflicted.” – CUE 50-word clip (2014)
“Andrew Buckland and Liezl De Kock induce both joy and heartache in their Ovation award-winning production…a heart-wrenching tale…Beautiful, moving and expertly presented, CRAZY IN LOVE should feature on the itinerary of every Festival-goer.” – CUE
“Buckland was simply majestic in the unconventional love story, CRAZY IN LOVE, devised by Buckland, co-star Liezl de Kock and director Rob Murray. The piece has been invited to the Amsterdam Fringe Festival, and it was fantastic to see Buckland on song in a special little play that showcases his arsenal of physical, dramatic and comic capabilities.” – BUSINESS DAY LIVE
“…exquisite…This trio are one of a number of theatre ‘dream teams’ one could conjure up. Buckland is masterful as usual, particularly in the role of the tramp and de Kock, who has an uncanny ability to embody an endearing yet tragic beauty on stage, has developed her art to the point where in this play her skill is perfectly matched with Buckland’s. I have for a while now been asking Murray to set me afloat on Sorrow, that river of the world. He certainly did it here.” – Steve Kretzmann, ARTSBLOG
“A desperate dad and his progeny embark on a madcap journey in search of a lost love, marking their trail in ink. Andrew Buckland never disappoints, and alongside a vibrant Liezl de Kock he is better than ever. Funny moments unexpectedly shatter into despair. A powerful performance.” – CUE 50-word clip (2013)
“One disappearing act at the alter sets up a story which is excruciatingly funny, hurtful, uncomfortable, yet always intrinsically pleasing. The set of trolly junk is masterful! Liezl’s depiction of a young girl’s journey to sexual awakening in an unspeakable world is unique and complex.” – Mike Loewe, ARTSBLOG
“visueel baie bevredigend, met as wat lyk soos ŉ hoop rommel op ŉ trollie wat deur die
loop van die produksie lewe kry en op kreatiewe wyses gebruik word. As ŉ geheel is CRAZY IN LOVE ŉ pragtige verhaal van menslike broosheid, geskep deur drie top Suid-Afrikaanse teatermakers” – Emma Kotze, LITNET
“Andrew Buckland gives a powerful performance as the heart-broken Leon whose hopefulness gradually morphs into a drunken desperation…Liezl de Kock’s portrayal of Ginny is superb. Her performance strikes the perfect balance between the child Ginny was and the adult she wishes to become” – OPPIDAN PRESS
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