A sen­sa­tional must-see

Kick­start’s ‘Camelot’ is qual­ity the­atre at its best

The Witness - - ARTS - ESTELLE SINKINS

Re­view ‘Camelot’ El­iz­a­beth Sned­don The­atre Univer­sity of KwaZulu-Na­tal Howard Col­lege cam­pus

KICK­START The­atre Com­pany has es­tab­lished a rep­u­ta­tion for ex­cel­lence and their lat­est pro­duc­tion, Lerner and Loewe’s glo­ri­ous mu­si­cal Camelot, un­der­lines that qual­ity the­atre is alive and well in Dur­ban.

Adapted from the epic T.H. White novel The Once and Fu­ture King, the mu­si­cal tells the story of King Arthur, the leg­endary fifth cen­tury Bri­tish leader, who led me­dieval Bri­tain’s de­fence against Saxon in­vaders.

Steven Stead is a per­fect King Arthur, ini­tially a bit boy­ish when he de­mands an­swers from his men­tor Mer­lin (Peter Court) and star­ryeyed when he meets his queen, Guin­e­vere (Jes­sica Sole).

Lyle Bux­ton brings no­bil­ity to his role as Sir Lancelot du Lac, a French­man who is ini­tially ridiculed by the court and other Knights of the Round Ta­ble for his be­lief in pu­rity, duty and ser­vice.

Arthur’s ide­al­ism is beau­ti­fully realised by Stead, as is his pain when his dreams of a civilised so­ci­ety — a place where de­bate rather than vi­o­lence rules — is shat­tered by the machi­na­tions of his il­le­git­i­mate son, Mor­dred (Nathan Kruger).

He en­cour­ages the knights to rebel and uses the love that has grown between Guin­e­vere and Lancelot against both them and his fa­ther.

Sole and Bux­ton show once again their tal­ent as they por­tray a re­la­tion­ship that moves from an­tag­o­nis­tic to pas­sion­ate as their char­ac­ters meet and fall in love. Un­able to take the fate­ful step and em­bark on a full-blown af­fair, they share their agony in the songsI Loved You Once in Si­lence and If Ever I Would Leave You.

The three leads are ably sup­ported by an en­sem­ble that includes Cameron Botha, Tshepo Ncokoane, By­ron McNeil, Mar­ion Loudon, Camilla Rogers, Nozuko Teto, Leigh Meyer, An­thony Stonier and Schoe­man Smit. NEED TO KNOW Kick­stArt’s

Camelot is at the El­iz­a­beth

Sned­don The­atre un­til June 3.

Book­ing is through Com­puticket. Please note: the show is not suit­able for chil­dren un­der eight years old.

Ter­rence Bray has out­done him­self with the cos­tumes for Camelot. They are noth­ing short of spec­tac­u­lar. Matched with Tina le Roux’s ex­tra­or­di­nary light­ing and Greg King’s de­cep­tively sim­ple set, the re­sult is sump­tu­ous and rich.

This comes across best when watch­ing the cast at play in the num­ber The Lusty Month of May, which is full of light­ness and joy, and then later at Lancelot’s knight­ing in the great hall, where the sim­mer­ing ten­sion between Arthur, Guin­e­vere and Lancelot is tan­gi­ble. Camelot is quite sim­ply a sen­sa­tional must-see. If you have not yet booked tick­ets, I urge you to do so now. The run ends on Sun­day, June 3.

PHOTO: VAL ADAM­SON

Camelot.

PHOTO: VAL ADAM­SON.

Steven Stead as King Arthur and Jes­sica Sole as Guin­e­vere in Kick­StArt The­atre Com­pany’s Camelot.

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