Perth Theatre’s Don Juan

September 22, 2021 by Catriona Anderson

Perth Theatre’s reopening season continues in a lighthearted vein with Grant O’Rourke’s playful take on Molière’s society-bashing satire Don Juan.

Steve McNicol (Twelfth Night, Moonlight and Magnolias, Irma Vep) plays the legendary lothario as a larger than life character while Cath Whitefield plays his long-suffering side-kick Sganarelle. Amy Kennedy who played Cecily in Perth Theatre’s 2020 production of The Importance of Being Earnest plays Dona Elvira. Perth Theatre’s artistic director Lu Kemp directs.

All Don Juan wants is to do whatever he wants, whenever he wants and occasionally marry a dozen or so women and abandon them. Is that so much to ask? Getting his hands on his rightful inheritance might help with that. If only he wasn’t being obstructed at every turn by jilted brides, aggrieved families out for revenge, his own libido and his manservant Sganarelle, who is determined to try and get him on the straight and narrow.

Will Don Juan ever achieve his dream of a simple life of unrelenting gratification? Will he ever get what’s coming to him? Or, like most rich guys, will he just keep failing upwards?

Set on a Scottish island, with whipcracking dialogue, quirky characters and unexpected plot twists, Don Juan is a cheeky comic romp that will keep audiences entertained and amused from start to finish.

Grant O’Rourke, who was playing Algernon in Perth Theatre’s The Importance of Being Earnest before the production was forced to close due to the pandemic explained how his love of comedy inspired him to to create the show:

“When lockdown first hit in 2020 I was having a whale of a time doing The Importance Of Being Earnest at Perth and we sadly had to end the run early. So there’s a nice symmetry for me to be back at Perth 18 months later as we start to return to theatres. It’s even more important to me that we’re back with a comedy. The lockdown was, for a lot of people, a dark and isolating time and I feel that getting audiences back in a room to laugh together is incredibly valuable. In theatre, comedy has always been my first love not just as an actor, but as an audience member. It’s healing, it’s cathartic and it’s the way I try and make sense of the world. But more than anything, it’s fun. Now, as a writer, I’m determined to make work that offers audiences the chance to be reflective and thoughtful while hopefully enjoying themselves at the same time. Theatre needs comedy now more than ever.”

Lu Kemp said:

“Molière was a master of giving an audience a great night out. He tickled his audience –  enjoying lampooning the social trends of the day. Molière’s heightened bold worlds invite an audience to laugh at themselves together, and Grant’s fresh, funny adaptation does this in bucketloads.”


Don Juan runs in Perth Theatre from Thursday 14 October until Saturday 30 October with socially distanced performances at on Saturday 16 October, Friday 22 October and Thursday 28 October. For tickets and informaton, visit www.horsecross.co.uk or call thePerth Theatre Ticketing team on 01738 621031 between 10am and 4pm from Monday to Friday or visit Perth Theatre Box Office during those opening hours.

Horsecross Arts is supported by Creative Scotland, Perth & Kinross Council and The Gannochy Trust.

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