Cape Town's Masque Theatre adapts episodes of TV classic for stage

Written by Tashi from the blog Tashi's TV on 24 May 2024
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How fanliscious is this... The Masque amateur dramatic theatre in Muizenberg, Cape Town is doing a tribute-type performance of the late 80s/early 90s sitcom The Golden Girls by adapting episodes from the series for stage.
Flashback to retroville:

The series centred round three widows and a divorcée who shacked up together in a house in Miami and it followed their lives, loves, misfortunes and close friendship.

The original Golden Girls.

The Masque's wiggy Golden Girls.

It ran for seven seasons, with a total of 180 half-hour episodes and The Masque is adapting four of them for theatre.

I love the idea because it's unique and celebrates TV in such a rad way, in an intimate space filled with the human connection that theatre offers.

It could be done with many other shows, adapted in innovative ways. The concept works perfectly with The Golden Girls because their house was the set so the stage show doesn't need to keep changing location.

It would suit Breaking Bad, specifically Season 3's Fly episode in which the lead characters Walt and Jesse go berserko trying to catch a fly. The entire episode takes place in their meth lab and Walt becomes convinced that the fly's going to contaminate their stock. 

Everything happens within the lab and their relationship is poetically explored, to the point that Walt almost confesses a deadly sin to Jesse. But doesn't.

I can picture a stage show of this. 47-minutes in total, served with a finger supper afterwards to a backdrop of music from the series while audiences savour the experience. 

In the case of shows that don't only have one set, you could select one signature location and perform evocative series-defining scenes that happened within that place.

It would work with numerous local series too e.g. Tiger's tavern in Zone 14, Oppiekoffie in 7de Laan, scenes from early Gen episodes. 

Also... coolness alert - you could alter the outcome of select storylines and give them new endings - the endings fans wanted to see on TV but didn't. 

There are abundant possibilities to this inspiring concept. TV writers and producers would be happy too - it would give their work cult status with additional income for script rights. They can't fleece theatres though, that would be awful. No, it must be done in the right way.

The Golden Girls is on from 24 May to 1 June. Here's a link to their website: The Masque Theatre and Facebook page.



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