Sunday Times Books LIVE Community Sign up

Login to Sunday Times Books LIVE

Forgotten password?

Forgotten your password?

Enter your username or email address and we'll send you reset instructions

Sunday Times Books LIVE

Theatre Adaptation of Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela’s A Human Being Died that Night Performed in London

A Human Being Died that NightPumla Gobodo-Madikizela’s book A Human Being Died that Night about her interviews with the jailed commanding officer of apartheid death squads, Eugene de Kock, has been adapted for the stage by Nick Wright and is currently on at the Hampstead Theatre in London.

The play, directed by Jonathan Munby, will be coming to Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria next year. Gobodo-Madikizela is played by Noma Dumezweni and Matthew Marsh, who stared as FW de Klerk in End Game, takes on the role of De Kock.

Munby told The South African that it made sense to premiere in London as there are “thousands of South Africans” who live there, but he also emphasised the universality of A Human Being Died that Night: “The nature of evil and the possibility of forgiveness is an extraordinary message”.

How did you get involved in this project?

The producer Eric Abraham gave me a copy of Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela’s book while I was doing my play The Number at the Fugard Theatre in Cape Town. He sensed it would make a terrific piece of theatre. I read the book and was blown away by it. Eric put me in touch with Nick Wright, who at that point had already written a draft script. I’m not South African, I’m English – that gave me a sort of objectivity, while Eric, Nick and indeed Pumla were close to the subject matter.

Book details

Image courtesy The South African


Please register or log in to comment