Rosebank director tackles Fugard play

Greg Karvellas. Picture: Claude Barnardo

Rosebank’s Greg Karvelles directs in Athol Fugard’s Statements After an Arrest Under the Immorality Act, which runs at the Fugard Theatre until October 26.

Written during apartheid in 1972 when love across the colour bar was a criminal offence, the play tells the story of the secret relationship between a white woman, Frieda Joubert (Liezl de Kock) and a coloured man, Errol Philander (Marlo Minnaar).

They couple are arrested after being reported to the police by a neighbour.

Karvelles says it’s special to be involved in an Athol Fugard production.

“Athol’s work is still relevant today, even though most of his work is written in the 70s , 80s and 90s.”

The play, he says, explores how the apartheid state broke people down and dehumanised them, especially those who were not white.

Minnar says he felt safe to explore and analyse the story with Karvelles and never felt lost or out of his depth during rehearsals.

“To trust a director’s vision is key for me and I trusted him completely in this journey.”

Karvelles has been in the local entertainment industry for 15 years. He was associate director on Nicholas Wright’s A Human Being Died That Night in 2014, and last year he directed Fugard’s The Road to Mecca, David Mamet’s Oleanna and Joshua Harmon’s Significant Other .

He has also done freelance work as a stage manager and producer at the Baxter Theatre, Artscape, Kalk Bay Theatre and Theatre on the Bay.

He was appointed as the Fugard Theatre’s artistic director last November.

“The main duties of the artistic director is to guide and look after the artistic vision of the theatre; he looks for new work and existing work and see what kind of work will be produced on the stage,” he says.

Next year is the Fugard Theatre’s 10th anniversary and Karvelles will be directing three productions – Master Harold and the Boys, It’s Only a Play and Young Frankenstein.

Statements After an Arrest Under the Immorality Act is on until Saturday October 26, with shows from Tuesdays to Saturdays at 8pm and a Saturday matinee at 4pm.

Tickets are from R160 to R220 and can be booked at or The Fugard Theatre box office at 021 461 4554.

There is an age restriction of 16.