It's a striking departure from the hard-hitting plays about South African segregation that we usually associate with Athol Fugard, plays like A Lesson from Aloes and Master Harold and the Boys. But on Nov. 19, the gentle comedy A Place with the Pigs opens at the Empty Space Theatre in Seattle.
Fugard based the play on a true story first reported in 1985 about a deserter from the Soviet army who spent 41 years of self-imposed exile hiding out in a pigsty.
Anthony Curry stars as the deserter, Pavel Invanovich Navrotsky, and the play is directed by the theatre's artistic director, Eddie Levi Lee.
A few months ago, Lee spoke in an interview about this very atypical comedy by the 65-year-old South African playwright, referring to the play's rich "blend of humor and pathos."
A Place with the Pigs is scheduled to be performed through Dec. 13; upcoming plays at Empty Space, which is now in its 28th season, include Dario Fo's Accidental Death of An Anarchist, Feb. 18-Mar. 21; John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men, Apr. 8-May 10; and Reduced Shakespeare Company's The Compleat Works of Wllm Shkspr (Abridged), May 20-June 27.
The Empty Space Theatre is located at 3509 Fremont Ave. N., Seattle, WA. For tickets, call (206) 547-7500.
-- By Rebecca Paller