‘The Island’ review: Friendship is tested and ultimately triumphs at Court Theatre

Kai A Ealy (left) and Ronald L. Conner star as inmates of a horrific prison in “The Island” at Court Theatre.

Michael Brosilow

Court Theatre’s stark, riveting production of “The Island” begins with the sound of waves crashing — almost lulling cadences that evoke beauty and tranquility. But when the lights come up in director Gabrielle Randle-Bent’s staging, there’s no water to be seen. We’re in a scorched world of burnt umber sand and concrete slabs bleached to bone. This is Robben Island, the South African prison where Nelson Mandela spent 18 of his 27 years incarcerated. Here, the ocean was repurposed as a prison wall. 

In the first, wordless scene of the 100-minute, two-man drama by Athol Fugard, John Kani and Winston Ntshona, we see two prisoners going through the torturous machinations of the day.

‘The Island’

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Source:: Chicago Sun Times

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