Herge & Tintin - A Guide

A Guide to all things Herge


TINTIN LIVE!

Tintin has had several appearences on stage throughout his history.

Tintin in India - The Mystery of the Blue Diamond ~ 1941

On 15 and 17 April and 1 and 8 of May 1941, a play was put on at the theatre des Galeries in Brussels. It was written by Herge himself and Jacques van Melkebeke, and directed by Paul Riga. Tintin was played by a girl, Jeanne Rubens, and she also played Snowy. It was performed in 3 acts.

It starts off in Padakhore in India, where several guests, the Thompsons, and Tintin, are staying. The Maharajah has his famous blue diamond stolen and it must have been one of the guests who took it. Tintin begins his investigations into which one of the guests is the thief while aboard the ship - the 'Rampura', and reveals his findings in Syldavia.

The Disappearence of Mr. Boullock ~ 1941/42

After the success of the previous play, Herge and Jacques van Melkebeke wrote another play, also directed by Paul Riga. It followed the pattern of the previous play, being in 3 parts, and it was again held in the 'theatre des Galeries', in Brussels, but this time Tintin was played by Roland Ravez, who was only 9. It ran on 26, 29 and 30 December 1941, and the 3rd and 8th January 1942.

The story is based around the wealthy Mr. Boullock who disappears, and as the Thompsons and Tintin start to investigate, two Mr. Boullocks turn up, and one of them is an imposter. Tintin must find professor Doryford, the only man who can work out which is which, but is on a trek across the globe...

Tintin's Great American Adventure ~ London, 1976/77

This play, presumably based on 'Tintin in America' was adapted by . It was performed by the Unicorn theatre company from 18th December 1976 to 20th february 1977, at the Unicorn Theatre arts centre in Great Newport Street, London.

Tintin and the Black Island ~ 1980, London

In 1980, Geoffrey Case released a new Tintin play based upon 'The Black island' for the Unicorn Theatre Company. It was first performed at the Arts in London. It then went on a tour, even being translated into French and being shown in Quebec in December 1984. It starred Richard Drabble as Tintin, Haluk Bilginer as Dr Muller, Hugh Hayes as Ivan, Carl Heap as Ranko and Leda Hodgson as Olga, who was a new edition to the play. It was directed by Tony Wredden.

De Zonnetempel/Le Temple du Soleil ~ Belgium, 2001-2002

This highly publicised musical was a huge hit. It was actually 2 different musicals, one in Dutch, and a later one in French. It was based on the books 'The 7 Crystal balls' and 'Prisoners of the Sun'. It was written by Seth Gaaikema and Frank van Laecke, with music by Dirk Brossé. It was adapted into the French version by Didier van Cauwelaert. Tintin was played by Tom Van Landuyt in the Dutch version and Vincent Heden in the French. The first (Dutch) version was huge success, with it being professionally filmed and shown on Canal+. The play ran from 15th September 2001 to 17th February 2002 in Antwerp. One interesting point was that the Great inca was played by Bob de moor's grandson, Chris. The second version, in French, was performed in Charleroi, in 2002. A third version was planned to be shown in Paris in 2003, but this was cancelled, probably because a key investor pulled out. 

Tintin in Tibet ~ 2005/06 and 06/07 London

This popular show was held at the Barbican in London, and produced by the acclaimed Young Vic theatre company. Clearly based on the book, 'Tintin in Tibet', it did not deviate from the book's story too much. It was highly popular, with very few seats empty in it's whole running. It was done over the Christmas/New Year period, so many families came. A brochure was released, which has since become collectable. It was directed by Rufus Noriss and the script was written by David Greig. The Young Vic summarised the play as...

'Criminal gangs, a friend lost in a plane crash and a trek through the snows of the high Himalayas... Just an ordinary day in the lives of young reporter Tintin and his loyal dog Snowy. The Young Vic is delighted to present the first major UK adaptation of Hergé's legendary cartoon hero, as Tintin and Captain Haddock battle to rescue Chang from the infamous Yeti.'

The play also contained a scene from 'The Blue Lotus' where Tintin meets Chang. Tintin was played by Russell Tovey, Haddock by Sam Cox and Snowy was played by Simon Trinder in a suit, and at other times they used a Westie, despite the fact that Snowy is a Fox terrier. Many fliers were produced (see above) as well as an email flier - http://youngvic.e-flyers.org.uk/tintin/ . The program was fairly small and contained several sections by Michael Farr, most of them taken from previously published books, pictures of the actors rehearsing, a section on Haddock's insults taken from 'Tintin and Snowy album 1', a cast list, advertising by the Brussels tourist board, the Tintin shop, HMV, the sponsors and Egmont.

 

Moulinsart have recently announced that they have managed to get the show a second run, in the west end of London in late 2006, early 2007. This is to commemorate Herge's birth centenary year - 2007.

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