Ubu and the Truth Commission returns to Market Theatre

Press Release below:


Photo by Val Adamson

The Market Theatre and the Windybrow Theatre in association with

Handspring Puppet Company


 UBU and the Truth Commission

 Author Jane Taylor

Directed by William Kentridge and associate Janni Younge

 25 August – 11 September 2016

 Pre Publicity 01.jpg

Ubu and the Truth Commission is a striking collaboration between William Kentridge and the Handspring Puppet Company. After extensive international touring this landmark piece of South African Theatre is returning to the Market Theatre to entertain and challenge audiences. The production is laced with dark sardonic wit, spectacular and disturbing animation and poignant, finely detailed puppetry.

The performance combines puppetry, live actors, music, animation and documentary footage drawn from the historical archive of South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The character of Pa Ubu (Dawid Minaar) represents the various instruments of Apartheid violence, like the police, assassins, spies and politicians. For Pa Ubu, torture, sex and food are all elements of a single gross appetite.

The drama revolves around a metaphorical tale of marital betrayal. Ma Ubu (Busi Zokufa) misinterprets Pa’s nocturnal absences in this tragic comedy that gives us glimpses into the devastating complexities of Apartheid. Handspring’s ingenious puppets provide the poignant testimonies that formed part of the Truth & Reconciliation Commission hearings. Direction and animation are by William Kentridge.

The Market Theatre’s Artistic Director James Ngcobo is bringing back Ubu and the Truth Commission to help the theatre celebrate its 40th anniversary by staging an exciting line-up of diverse and exhilarating productions. The play had its premier at the Market Theatre 20 years ago, and members of the original cast, Busi Zokufa and Dawid Minaar, are back on stage in the roles they brought to life so vividly.

Revived in celebration of 20 years of democracy in South Africa, the production has been touring internationally for the past 3 years. It is now returning to South Africa for a limited season from 25 August – 11 September, with the Market Theatre bringing it back home.

Previous Performances


Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States of America


Brasil, Columbia, Taiwan, South Africa, United-Kingdom, Italy, Belgium, Greece, Australia, Canada, USA, France, Spain, Hungary and Germany.

Pre Publicity 02.jpg



Author                                                            Jane Taylor

Director                                                          William Kentridge

Associate Director                                        Janni YOunge

Puppet Design                                               Adrian Kohler

Animation                                                      William Kentridge

Lighting Design                                             Wesley France

Set Design                                                      Adrian Kohler and William Kentridge

Costume Design                                            Adrian Kohler

Choreographer                                             Robyn Orlin

Sound Design                                                Wilbert Schubel

Music Design                                                 Warrick Sony and Brenday Jury

Sound Technitian                                         Simon Mahoney

Stage Manager                                               Bruce Koch

Pre Publicity 03.jpg

Performers:                                                  Character     

Dawid Minaar                                                Pa Ubu

Busi Zokufa                                                    Ma Ubu

Mongi Mthombeni                                        Puppeteer

Mandiseli Maseti                                           Puppeteer

Gabriel Marchand                                         Puppeteer



Season:                                                            25 August – 11 September 2016


Opening Night                                             Friday 26 August 2016
Venue:                                                               The John Kani @The Market Theatre


Show times:                                                    Tuesdays to Saturdays @ 20h00 and Sunday @15h00

To make block bookings, please contact Anthony Ezeoke 011 832 1641ext 121 and Ncebakazi Thintsila 011 832 1641 ext 135.


Ticket Prices:

  • Student Price                                     R65.00
  • Tuesday – Wednesday         R95. 00
  • Thursday:                              R 120.00
  • Friday – Saturday:                R 200.00
  • Sunday:                                  R 150.00


For further information, interviews and images, contact:

Lusanda Zokufa , Senior Publicist
Market Theatre
011 832 1641 ext 123 or 072 367 7867


About moirads

Clergy person, theatre and music lover, avid reader, foodie. Basically, I write about what I do, where I go and things I love (or hate).
This entry was posted in South African Culture, Theatre. Bookmark the permalink.

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