Athol Fugard (1932-) is one of South Africa’s most influential playwrights, directors and novelists. Over the past six decades, he has written over 30 plays, four movie scripts, two novels and two autobiographies. During this time, he has also received a host of international accolades, including the prestigious Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre and the Praemium Imperiale, a renowned global arts prize awarded by Japan’s imperial family. His incisive works explore social issues, apartheid, and the real lives and struggles of people in South Africa.
Adapted from a true story, The Road to Mecca is considered one of Fugard’s best works. Helen’s husband died 15 years ago and since then the elderly widow has become withdrawn and isolated. Furthermore, she has built up a large collection of sculptures in her garden, all looking toward Mecca. The strait-laced residents of the town are bewildered by such behavior and the local pastor Marius tries hard to put her in an old people’s home. Then Helen’s close friend Elsa, a young school teacher arrives for an unexpected visit, and she sees Helen’s actions from a totally different perspective…While set in South Africa, the drama’s message is universal: can we accept people who are different and allow free spirits the space they need to create?
In this presentation, the Hong Kong Federation of Drama Societies invites established actors to perform the work through play-reading. Eschewing costumes and staging, the production will encourage audience members to liberate their imagination and experience the power of creative freedom.
Director / Speaker Luther Fung
Translator Dominic Cheung
Cast Patra Au, Ben Yuen, Ng Fung-ming
Sound Design Stoa Lau