Already closed | 1h 40m | Midtown W

The Painted Rocks at Revolver Creek

From 8 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant, Absorbing, Great writing

About the show

Signature Theatre presents a world premiere by Athol Fugard inspired by the life of South African outsider artist Nukain Mabusa. More…

Aging farm laborer Nukain has spent his life transforming the rocks at Revolver Creek into a vibrant garden of painted flowers. Now, the final unpainted rock, as well as his young companion Bokkie, has forced Nukain to confront his legacy as a painter, a person and a black man in 1980s South Africa. When the landowner’s wife arrives with demands about the painting, the profound rifts of a country hurtling toward the end of apartheid are laid bare.

Member Reviews (8)


Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant, Absorbing, Great writing
Avg Score

Disappointing, Thought-provoking, Important subject, Long, Unconvincing plot

See it if you love Fugard's work. Tho not as effective as Master Harold, PRARC still has fascinating social commentary. Act II is unconvincing.

Don't see it if you want a coherent plot and outstanding dialogue (it is repetitive). I even got sick of watching the painting. Still, exposure to new info.

Also I was interested in Painted Rocks, but the plot didn't work by the end... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Intelligent, Painful, Good performances, Touching

See it if You like drama, you have an interest in social history of apartheid, like serious topical dialogue

Don't see it if You prefer light fare, you are not interested in life in other countries, equality struggle.

Absorbing, Great acting, Great staging, Intelligent, A little overwritten

See it if You enjoy great acting and stories of human creativity and resilience.

Don't see it if You aren't interested in South African stories and can't take a little second-act preachiness

Slow, Potent, Masterful, Sturdy, Relevant

See it if you want to catch the latest work by an old master, unsurpassed at matching the political with the personal in simple words and actions.

Don't see it if you want that revolver to go off. Patchy pacing, with serious talk emphasized over excitement, may make you feel you're watching paint dry.

Exquisite, Great writing, Intelligent, Lifelike, Profound

See it if you like a simple and beautiful set and a moving story about an old man and a boy in pre and post Apartheide South Africa.

Don't see it if you find it really hard to understand a thick South African accent.

Absorbing, Exquisite, Great staging, Original, Relevant

See it if you want to see a show that makes you think, but without it feeling like it takes a lot of effort. Great staging and acting

Don't see it if you want something unequivocally upbeat, or faster-paced

Great acting, Relevant, Masterful, Great writing

See it if You love Athol Fugard, he is a master playwrite

Don't see it if you want excitement

During previews
Potent, Gripping, Great writing, Great acting, Powerful

See it if you care to be enlightened by a master playwright on the persistent racial scars left by apartheid on the lives of South Africans

Don't see it if you are unprepared for the emotional journey behind a seemingly simple portrait of an artist's legacy

May 11th, 2015
"The tense conversation that ensues sometimes stumbles over expositional passages detailing the contrasting fates of farmers in South Africa and Zimbabwe. And while Jonathan’s eloquence is neatly explained by his passion for words, some of his speeches have the whiff of the prepared lecture about...
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May 11th, 2015
"Fugard’s play, performed by an excellent cast of four, derives much of its initial power from simplicity. There is great joy in witnessing the artist commit himself to paint...But much of this consists of rehashing and explaining what was clear enough in the play’s first half. Mabusa’s struggle ...
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May 11th, 2015
"A play like The Painted Rocks, meant no doubt to be timeless, seems timebound instead...This is not to say that Fugard’s traditional works can’t be powerful, but their power is, to my mind, not always sufficiently theatrical, especially when they approach his great subject...There is not much ro...
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May 11th, 2015
"An intimate theatrical gem...The play becomes a bit stilted and didactic, in which the post-apartheid themes are stated far too explicitly. But it's deeply moving nonetheless...The production has its flaws — the staging is too leisurely, and not all of the dialogue rings true. But the work is a ...
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