Nocturne

Solo Drama • Running Time: 70 mins
Written by Adam Rapp | Directed by Emily Child | Performed by Francis Chouler | Design by Niall Griffin
The South African premier of Nocturne is by arrangement with United Artists

15 years ago, in Joliet, Illinois, a 17 year teenager accidentally runs over and kills his 9 year old sister in a ’69 Buick Electra while driving home from his summer job. The event cracks his life wide open. As the unnamed narrator flees his childhood home to restart his life in a bookshop in New York City, he has nothing but old memories and new books to rebuild his world.

NOCTURNE is the honest and unconventionally moving story of a man dealing with the effects of a life altering incident. It is a clear, arresting recollection of love, hilarity and pain as well as a boldly inspiring reminder of what it is to be human.

Praise for Nocturne:

“Rapp… is an ambitious and prodigiously talented writer” - Charles Isherwood, Variety.

“There is an undeniable, cumulative power to the writing here” - Bruce Weber, The New York Times.

“At once beautiful and haunting, compelling and agonising… a bold, elegant and even funny exploration of how a single moment as the power both to connect us and chance our lives.” - Mark de la Vina, San Jose Mercury News.

Adam Rapp (Playwright)
Adam Rapp is an American novelist, playwright, screenwriter, musician and film director. His play, Red Light Winter, was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2006. Nocturne was first staged in 2001 at the New York Theatre Workshop. Nocturne was awarded Boston’s Elliot Norton Award for Best New Script as well as Best New Play by the independent Reviewers of New England. It was chosen as one of the ten “Best Plays of 2000-2001 by the annual Chronicle of U.S Theatre.

Francis Chouler (Performer)
Francis received his honours degree in Theatre and Performance, cum laude from the University of Cape Town in 2010. He has appeared in four seasons of Shakespeare at Maynardville Open Air theatre (Twelfth Night, As You Like It, Taming of the Shrew and Cardenio). He performed together with Emily Child in Born in The RSA (Baxter Studio Theatre, National Arts Festival, Hilton Festival) directed by Thoko Ntshinga. Francis has performed at the Alexander Bar theatre in Cock by Mike Bartlett and Over There by Mark Ravenhill directed by Fred Abrahamse. Francis is a member of The Long Shots Improv comedy troupe, and performs regularly at the Alexander bar and other venues in the city. This is his first solo theatre show.

Emily Child (Director)
Emily graduated from the University of Cape Town in 2007 with a Theatre and Performance Degree, specializing in Acting. Since then she has worked independently and as a proud member of acclaimed Cape Town based theatre troupe – The Mechanicals. Her work has garnered her numerous awards and nominations including the 2015 Fleur Du Cap for Best Actress for the role of “Laura” in Louis Viljoen’s The Pervert Laura last staged at the The Fugard Theatre. Other theatre projects include Lear, written by William Shakespeare and directed by Guy De Lancey, Champ, written by Louis Viljoen and directed by Greg Karvellas, which travelled to the Edinburgh Festival in 2013, as well as LA based Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre and The Mechanicals’ co-production Urban Death, directed by Jana Wimer. Emily’s one -woman show, based on Dorothy Parker’s short stories, A Certain Lady was directed by Greg Karvellas and performed around Cape Town in 2014. Emily was recently seen at The Baxter Studio Theatre, Grahamstown and Hilton Festivals in Born in the RSA, directed by Thoko Ntshinga as well as Mike Bartlett’s Contractions, at The Alexander Bar’s Upstairs Theatre, directed by Greg Karvellas in February 2016. In 2018 she worked with Karvellas again on Athol Fugard’s Road to Mecca at the Fugard Theatre with Sandra Prinsloo and Marius Weyers.  Emily’s recent  film projects include Beyond the River, directed by Craig Freimond,  and most recently, BBC‘s television series Troy - Fall Of A City  as well as  the HBO series - Warrior- conceptualized by Bruce Lee and released in 2019. Nocturne is her directorial debut.

Press & Reviews

  • Fri 13th Sep 2019 Weekend Special

    "Francis is the perfect storyteller. He creates a focused intensity that is both unnerving and impossible to break away from. He masters the imagery. He is the picture of restraint, clarity and control as he wrestles with the material that is decidedly unsentimental yet heart breaking”

    Review of 'Nocturne' by Megan Furniss for Weekend Special

  • Thu 12th Sep 2019 Theatre Scene CPT

    "[the script’s] blend of bone-dry humour, startling imagery, intelligent satire, and at times sublime poetry, keeps the audience in thrall as they accompany the narrator on his 17-year long journey in the aftermath of life-changing tragedy."

    Review of 'Nocturne' by Dr Beverley Brommert

  • Thu 22nd Aug 2019 Theatre Scene CPT

    "With Rapp’s exquisite text in hand, Chouler knew he had to find the perfect director to cherish the play as much as he does."

    Press Release on Theatrescene Cape Town




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