*In light of the public gathering ban implemented by President Cyril Ramaphosa yesterday (15.3.20) this event has been postponed to September. I will reactivate once have a confirmed date – thank you! HH
Shirley is a bored, middle-aged housewife, trapped in a stale, loveless marriage. Her children are all grown up and she frequently talks to the wall in her kitchen while preparing her husband’s regular evening meal of egg and chips. Shirley feels stuck in a rut and finds solace in her daily glass of wine as she muses over the lack of excitement in her life.
When her best friend asks her to go to Greece with her for 2 weeks, Shirley jumps at the chance with a mix of exhilaration and jittery nerves. Leaving a note for her husband that simply reads “Gone to Greece – Back in two weeks”, Shirley leaves for her holiday.
While relaxing on holiday, she rediscovers the woman she used to be and the happiness that she has been missing. Shirley embarks on a passionate affair with Costas, a local Greek man, and realizes that there is more to life than the dull, mundane existence she leads back home in Liverpool.
Making a radical decision, she leaves her friend at the airport and goes back to the hotel she has been staying at to ask for a job. Finally, she is living the life she has dreamed of and rediscovered the self-confidence she has lost.
Some of you will remember her. Willy Russell’s heroine of the ’80s. She played the West End and Broadway won numerous accolades and was celebrated in the film. Her name was Shirley Valentine before she became Shirley Bradshaw, a middle-aged woman, lost in her role as mother to two grown children, and wife to a husband in a somewhat stale marriage. When a friend offers her a trip to Greece, a long-forgotten exuberance begins to bubble up in her.
Shirley’s journey is a celebration of many a contemporary woman, balancing motherhood, marriage and self-actualisation. Shirley Bradshaw is the ‘original gangster’ of self-care and self-love – a beacon of empowerment. Long before we had hashtags, we had Shirley.
“We believe that what Shirley has to say is important. And it is more relevant than ever,” says Jaco van Rensburg from VR Theatrical. “My business partner grew up knowing the movie and it was his idea to option it. When I watched it – and later read it – I knew he was spot on! It is relatable, oh so funny and even more relevant today!”
The play will be directed by Gina Shmukler – a true lady of the theatre who has worked extensively in New York City and all over the world, but returned to SA stages a couple of years ago, juggling numerous other creative projects.
And who do you cast in such an iconic role? Someone who has done it all – been on Egoli and Scandal, knows and loves the theatre, has won awards, written books and lived life a little. Enter stage, Natasha Sutherland, who is “over the moon playing Shirley!”
Shirley Valentine will be on the boards at Pieter Toerien’s Montecasino Studio from 26 March – 3 May 2020. Performances from Wednesdays to Saturdays at 20:00 and matinees on Saturdays at 16:00 and Sundays at 15:00.
Ticket Prices range from R100 – R180 and are available through Computicket HERE…