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How Would You Describe a Day You’ll Never Forget?

Director Danny Boyle in South Africa with Via Vyndal
Director Danny Boyle in South Africa with Via Vyndal, the pantsula dance crew specially selected to perform at Carnegie Hall.

On November 13, the Africa-based charity Dramatic Need and Carnegie Hall bring together an extraordinary all-star cast—including Daveed Diggs, Daniel Kaluuya, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, James McAvoy, Audra McDonald, Ewan McGregor, Sienna Miller, Javier Muñoz, Trevor Noah, Susan Sarandon, Charlize Theron, and Catherine Zeta-Jones—for a one-night-only theatrical performance of The Children’s Monologues, based on unforgettable stories of children growing up in Rammulotsi, a small rural township in the remote Free State province of South Africa.

Watch the making of The Children’s Monologues, staged in October 2015 in London.

Invited to describe a day that they will never forget, the monologues recount the personal stories of young people in their own words—sometimes harrowing, sometimes uplifting, and always moving. Adapted for the stage by some of the world’s most pre-eminent playwrights and directed by Academy Award–winning director Danny Boyle, the production gives audience members a powerful glimpse into a world in which children are forced to grapple with astonishing challenges.

It was these compelling stories that first inspired Boyle to bring The Children’s Monologues to the stage. “They capture some extraordinary moments in the lives of these kids. There is something so powerful about their words—the simple humanity of them—that creates an intimate connection between each actor and the audience, across thousands of miles, across continents, race, age, income, and gender. The effect is to transport all of us in the theater to the townships and into these children’s shoes. It is exactly what great theater should do: move you to see something so far away from your own experience as if it’s right up close.”

The Children’s Monologues comes to New York for the first time this fall, following two successful productions in London’s West End. As in London, Boyle’s signature directing style—intertwining sound, video, dance, and visual art—will help capture the audience’s imagination. Musical performances by leading artists will be interwoven throughout the evening, including appearances by Tony Award-winning Broadway star Cynthia Erivo, Grammy Award–winning vocalist–double bassist Esperanza Spalding and British rapper Little Simz. Energetic young dancers, personally selected by Boyle, will perform pantsula, a vibrant form of dance born in the streets of apartheid-era Johannesburg. Additionally, New York City teens, invited by Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute, will take part in this special production. Contributing to the visual design on stage will be striking images by sought-after artists from England, the US, and South Africa, extending the circle of creative talent from around the world collaborating on this event.

Harrowing, hopeful, wise, redemptive—an unforgettable evening of theater, music, and storytelling not to be missed.

The Children's Monologues
Monday, November 13 at 7:30 PM
The Children’s Monologues

One of the major theatrical events of the season, this dramatic performance features a starry cast of Oscar, Tony, and Emmy award-winning actors. Adapted for the stage by the world’s finest playwrights, The Children’s Monologues are based on the words of children growing up in rural and remote African townships. All proceeds from this one-night-only presentation go to jointly support Dramatic Need and Carnegie Hall.

Directed by Academy Award winner Danny Boyle

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