David Lan

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David Lan (born 1952). Playwright, filmmaker, theatre director and social anthropologist.


Born in Cape Town, studied B.A. Drama at the University of Cape Town, then went to England in 1972. Except for two years in Zimbabwe (1980-1982), he has made his career in London, obtaining a BSc (1976) and a PhD (1984) in Social Anthropology from the London School of Economics.

He was appointed artistic director of the Young Vic theatre in London in 2000 and was awarded an honorary D.Litt by the University of the South Bank in 2010.

He has written more than 15 plays, all produced in the UK and elsewhere.

Role in South African theatre, film and media.


Directed A New Way to Pay Old Debts at the Little Theatre in 1971 and The Sport of my Mad Mother at the The Space, in 1972.

In 1988 Moyra Fine produced and Barney Simon directed his Flight at the Market.

Film and TV

As scriptwriter he has been involved in a number of works in and on Southern Africa, including The Sunday Judge (1985, filmed in Mozambique); Dark City (1990, filmed in South Africa) and Welcome Home Comrades (1990, filmed in Namibia).


Wikipedia [1].

Tucker, 1997. p. 467.

Astbury 1979.

Inskip, Donald P., 1972.

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