An Audience with MISS HOBHOUSE
An Audience with Miss Hobhouse, by Tony Jackman, is directed by Christopher Weare and stars Lynita Crofford.
It is a one-act play about the Cornish-born British aristocrat Emily Hobhouse, and her battle to expose the harsh conditions under which the British forces in South Africa during the Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902 treated Boer prisoners of war, chiefly women and children.
An Audience with Miss Hobhouse delves into the world of Emily Hobhouse, who devoted a good part of her adult years to bringing the plight of Boer women and children to the attention of her British fellow countrymen. It is a one-act play in which the actor plays both Hobhouse – in her later years – and a Boer woman, Tant Alie, who was a genuine victim of the British actions against the Boers in the ir concentration camps, and whose memoir Hobhouse translated into English some years after the end of the war…
A handful of bit players also come on stage – troops, war correspondents and the like – as Miss Hobhouse, supposedly addressing a West End of London theatre audience in her last years, reflects on her role in the conflict, and her only partially successful efforts to make the British public understand how badly the plan by Lord Roberts and later Lord Kitchener to bring the Boers to heel by incarcerating their women and children had gone awry. This production sees Lynita Crofford in the dual roles, directed by Christopher Weare. The play was first performed at the Schreiner Karoo Writers Festival in Cradock, Eastern Cape, where the premiere performance was greeted with a standing ovation.