Tangle, in association with MAST Mayflower Studios, presents
Richard the Second
A nation is in turmoil. Three first cousins – Richard, Aumerle and Henry – battle for the supreme position of authority. Who will succeed in saving their country from a trail of ultimate destruction? And who will survive the challenge for the throne?
Tangle, in association with MAST Mayflower Studios, presents a radical and electrifying new adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Richard the Second performed in its distinctive Southern African Township theatre style.
Tangle’s unique interpretation of one of the most compelling of Shakespeare’s history plays, exploring the politics of power and family alliances, will be performed by a multi-skilled ensemble of five. With an original score of Zimbabwean music and song, this new multicultural production offers a fast, powerful and fresh take on this state of the nation play, while celebrating talented artists whose multi-national voices are at the centre of Tangle’s work.
Richard the Second continues the company’s long-term commitment to championing African Caribbean artistic excellence, presenting classic plays in new and surprising ways to audiences of all kinds.
‘Here, cousin, seize the Crown’
What is Southern African township theatre?
In South Africa, a township is defined as a suburb or city of predominately black occupation, in the apartheid years designated for black occupation under government legislation. The word ‘township’ is still used around the world today to describe different forms of habitat within shifting political contexts.
Township theatre is a creative form established in South Africa during the 1950’s to create accessible theatre works suitable for performance in informal settings, such as township community and church halls.
Actors often present the work in several different languages. A-cappella song is to accompany each work, as well as interpolated sound and instrumental music (both live and pre-recorded). Sometimes the artists sing and speak at the same time. This technique is known as ‘sing-speak’ and originates from Zimbabwe and can be enhanced through recorded sound animation.
Performers also use ‘practical lighting’, working light sources like lamps, candles, or even a TV, rather than stage lighting.