A Man of good hope

17/05/18

BASED ON THE BOOK BY JONNY STEINBERG
ADAPTED BY ISANGO ENSEMBLE
In English
THÉÂTRE MUSICAL



South Africa's Isango Ensemble are breaking new ground with this international co-production. This true story of one refugee's epic quest across Africa is brought to the Grand Théâtre by Director Mark Dornford-May of London's Young Vic. This is not simply a story set to music; the music is an intrinsic part of the story. Set up in 2000 by Mark Dornford-May and Pauline Malefane, the Isango Ensemble has drawn on the musical and acting talent of the townships surrounding Cape Town to create revelatory versions of The Mysteries and the award-winning The Magic Flute . Now they have adapted a book by Jonny Steinberg, which tells the story of Asad Abdullahi.

Asad is a young Somali refugee with a painful past, miraculous good luck and a brilliant head for business. After years in a refugee camp and hustling on the streets of Ethiopia, he sets off for the promised land of South Africa. But when he arrives, he discovers the violent reality of life in the townships - and his adventures really begin.

The set is cleverly mastered to evoke life in the townships, and the passing of time. Doors that have to be crawled through or climbed over or get slammed in the face are an eloquent recurring motif on the bare, raked stage, with its rusty, corrugated-iron horizon. Mandisi Dyantyis' score is played on marimbas, which can sound, by turns, aggressive, bony and yet full of life. Music is a unique part of a story that is told through exuberant songs and dance. The tunes are clan songs, which serve as recognition and stir memories.

» Most of the company members are drawn from townships like those in which Asad experienced such brutality. With their frank and flexible acting, they show how easily a person might slide from vulnerability to cruelty and how a seemingly laudable goal, the desire of black South Africans to achieve equality with their white countrymen and women, can curdle into an ugly xenophobia. (...) A Man of Good Hope is less an indictment of callousness than it is a profound act of empathy and a reminder of what a mighty force empathy in the theatre can be. The New York Times, Alexis Soloski

» ... a powerful testament to the resilience of humanity. The Guardian, Ian Birrell

» In troubled post-Brexit Britain, the show is an inspiration in its open-hearted resonant appeal for mutual respect and understanding and in the way it prefers truth of feeling to generalising sentimentality. The Independent, Paul Taylor




Direction Mark Dornford-May
Conductor Mandisi Dyantyis
Musical Direction Mandisi Dyantyis & Pauline Malefane
Movement Lungelo Ngamlana
Light Mannie Manim
Speech & Dialogue Lesley Nott Manim With Noluthando Boqwana, Thobile Dyasi, Ayanda Eleki, Ayanda Elek, Thandokazi Fumba, Zamile Gantana, Nontsusa Louw, Sifiso Lupuzi, Pauline Malefane, Zanele Mbatha, Katlego Mmusi, Zoleka Mpotsha, Siyanda Ncobo, Cikizwa Ndamase, Busisiwe Ngejane, Sonwabo Ntshata, Luvo Rasemeni, Khanya Sakube, Tshepo Skosana, Sindiswa Sityata, Masakane Sotayisi, Luvo Tamba, Ayanda Tikolo A Young Vic & Isango Ensemble production
Co-produced by Les Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg, The Royal Opera, Repons Foundation, Brooklyn Academy of Music - New YorkJeudi 17  MAI 2018 Ă  20h00 (tickets)
Vendredi 18  MAI 2018 Ă  20h00 (tickets)
Samedi 19 MAI 2018 Ă  20h00 (tickets)
DURÉE environ 2h10 & entracte Introduction to the play by Janine Goedert at 7.30pm before every performance (in English)
Adultes 20 € / Jeunes 8 € / Kulturpass bienvenu
Lieu: Grand Théâtre / Studio