My Life

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A play workshopped under the guidance of Athol Fugard in 1994.


For his first production in the new South Africa Fugard went back to the workshop method he had used decades earlier with the Serpent Players in Port Elizabeth, which resulted in milestone productions such as The Island (1973), developed with John Kani and Winston Ntshona. Fugard again used inexperienced actors to develop My Life, bringing together five young South African women, ages ranging from 15 to 21, from across the racial spectrum. He facilitated the documentation of each one’s personal experiences during the final days of apartheid and the first days of democracy. With director Rebecca Waddell, he then developed their “journals” into a stage presentation with each of the five girls narrating her own story. In an interview with The Star Fugard described the aim of the project in simple and direct terms: “ reflect and celebrate the cultural diversity and contrasts of our South African reality” (Sichel, 1994).

Performance history in South Africa

My Life, sub-titled “An allegory for Reconciliation”, premièred in the Tesson Theatre at the Johannesburg Civic in June 1994, workshopped by Athol Fugard, directed by Rebecca Waddell, with Elleanor Busi Mthimunye, Reshoketswe Maredi, Heather Leite, Riana Jacobs and Sivagamy Govender. The same production was staged at the Grahamstown Festival in July 1994.

Translations and adaptations


[Van Heerden (2008)][1]. p 95.

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