Sarafina! (1986) the stage musical by Mbongeni Ngema
The original text
Set at Morris Isaacson High School in Soweto, where in 1976 students assembled to protest against Afrikaans as the only medium of instruction. Through narrative, song and dance, Sarafina! follows the activities of a fictional class and, in particular, one girl named Sarafina, who inspired her classmates with her commitment to the struggle against apartheid.
Created in June 1986 and opened at the Market Theatre in June 1987, directed and choreographed by Ngema, with music by Ngema and Hugh Masekela. The play became enormously successful, going on to America, opening in January 1988 to run on Broadway for two years, then undertook a five-year tour of the United State of America. A second cast, which opened at the Market Theatre in 1988, went on a world tour for four years which included the UK, Europe, Australia, Japan and West Africa. It was nominated for and won numerous awards over the years.
The text was published by ** in 198*,
Translations and adaptations
1986: Performed by Committed Artists at the Market Theatre in 1986, directed and choreographed by Ngema, with music by Ngema, and Hugh Masekela and featuring Leleti Khumalo as “Sarafina”, along with 20 dancers and singers. This company went on to open in New York in January 1988, and continue touring in the USA for 5 years.
1988: The second company opened at the Market Theatre, before beginning a four yuar tour, which included the UK, Europe, Australia, Japan and West Africa.
2004: A co-production by the State Theatre, the Market Theatre, PACOFS and Ngema’s theatre company Committed Artists was staged with a large cast including Leleti Khumalo, Pat Mlaba and Velephi Mnisi and opened in the State Theatre in June 2004 before touring to other South African venues.
2012: A student production in the Breytenbach Theatre, Pretoria, by Department of Performing Arts (Musical Theatre) at the Tshwane University of Technology, directed by Josias Dos Moleele, with Sidney Agnew and Letshego Seekoe as choreographers, Rostislava Pashkevitch as the Musical Director, assisted by Pule Makona and sound design by Freddy Malesa. Produced by Vusabantu Ngema.
2017: Presented by the South African State Theatre, Pretoria, in association with Mbongeni Ngema and Committed Artists Theatrical Theatricals and funded by the National Department of Arts and Culture. Opening on 25 February.
Sarafina! (1992) the film, by Anant Singh and Darryl Roodt
Artslink.co.za News Headlines - Week 44 - 05/11/2016 09:30
Go to ESAT Bibliography
Return to PLAYS I: Original SA plays
Return to PLAYS II: Foreign plays
Return to PLAYS III: Collections
Return to South African Festivals and Competitions
Return to The ESAT Entries
Return to Main Page