'Master Harold' ... and the boys, National Theatre - ★★★★★ - Until December 17, 2019


A sign of a classic is that it never loses its relevance, continuing to reach both mind and heart with its truth about the human condition. Athol Fugard's masterpiece, 'Master Harold' ... and the Boys stands that test of time. This is a work set in 1950s, apartheid South Africa which will always speak to people in all times and places. As long as the simple joys of dancing and kite flying can be shared in friendship by the likes of Sam, Willie and Hally, and as long as the poison of shame and self-hatred can lead to the creation and projection of such feelings onto "the other," Fugard's aspiration for a better world "where people aren't bumping into each other all the time" is going to resonate. Lucian Msamati does an amazing job as Sam. He is as surefooted in this role as his character is in the complex web of social relations in which he finds himself. Hammed Animashaun is equally strong as the less adept, easily frustrated Willie who is trying to master the intricacies of ballroom dancing. As Hally, Anson Boon offers a strong performance as the troubled adolescent, torn between the values of the family and society of his birth and the beliefs he is developing and the family of his heart. As always the production values at the National Theatre are outstanding. This is a timely production of a timeless story.

Reviewed by J.C.

 Our Score:  ☆☆☆☆☆ 

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WHEN, WHERE, GETTING THERE:
Until December 17, 2019
Various show times available. See website below.
Lyttelton Theatre, National Theatre
Nearest tube: Waterloo

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