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The Train Driver
2013/14 Season

The Train Driver
Philadelphia Premiere
By Athol Fugard
Directed by Matt Pfeiffer
April 10 - May 4, 2014

Gripped by the memory of an accident he could not prevent, a restless train driver wanders an African township, trying to lose himself in anguish and guilt. What he finds instead is an unexpected stranger who has the power to offer forgiveness that would free him from his torment. Producer of three Athol Fugard classics (The Island in 2012, Sizwe Bansi Is Dead in 2009, and "Master Harold"...and the boys in 2006), Lantern Theater Company is proud to present the Philadelphia premiere of this new play from the 2011 Tony Award-winner for Lifetime Achievement. Based on a shocking true story, this potent, riveting drama reveals a playwright at the height of his power to move and inspire, exploring the possibilities for redemption and brotherhood in the new South Africa.

"This is for me the whole; it's my truth and reconciliation. I think all of my writing life led up to the writing of The Train Driver because it deals with my own inherited blindness and guilt and all of what being a white South African in South Africa during those apartheid years meant." –Athol Fugard
Cast & Production Team

Peter DeLaurier as Roelf Visagie  •  Kirk Wendell Brown as Simon Hanabe

Meghan Jones, Production Manager  •  Lance Kniskern, Scenic Designer  •  Katherine Fritz, Costume Designer  •  Drew Billiau, Lighting Designer  •  Christopher Colucci, Sound Designer  •  Marla Burkholder, Dialect Coach  •  Rebecca Smith, Stage Manager  •  Sarah Mitteldorf, Assistant Director
News & Reviews

"This Philadelphia premiere of The Train Driver marks another successful return to Fugardís work for the Lantern. The allegorical play captures the fullness of South African society beyond the scrubby graveyard, and the performances and production fulfill the promise of this affecting parable." –Phindie

"Peter DeLaurier, a single large curl dangling over his forehead, is remarkable. The gravedigger [is] beautifully rendered by Kirk Wendell Brown." –WHYY NewsWorks

"A superlative production. [Peter] DeLaurier, a veteran People's Light & Theatre Company resident actor and one of area theater's underappreciated treasures, gives a brilliantly raw performance that alone makes The Train Driver compelling and worthwhile. His emotional honesty, as he physically collapses while also mentally imploding, is truly harrowing and heartbreaking – and he does it all with a thick, yet always understandable, Afrikaans accent. Fugard doesn't break new ground with The Train Driver, but his important themes certainly merit this intense 90-minute airing, especially through such a lovingly detailed and sincerely acted production." –Philadelphia City Paper
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Header Photo: Paul L. Nolan, Sally Mercer, and Charles McMahon in Copenhagen (2018); Charlie DelMarcelle, Anthony Lawton, Jered McLenigan, and Brian Anthony Wilson in The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (2019); Anthony Lawton and Paul L. Nolan in The Craftsman (2017); and Bi Jean Ngo and Peter DeLaurier in The Tempest (2018). Photos by Mark Garvin.

Lantern Theater Company respectfully acknowledges that it is situated on Lenapehoking, the ancestral and spiritual homeland of the Unami Lenape.

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