The Suitcase to close UK tour at the Playhouse

SOUTH African theatre company Market Theatre Johannesburg will close a North England tour of The Suitcase, with five shows at the Playhouse (4-7 October). Set in 1950s South Africa, a young newly married couple leave their rural village and disapproving family for the city of Durban, with the goal of returning home rich and free. But alienated in the city, unemployed and poor, Timi starts to lose his moral compass. Desperate to provide for his pregnant wife, he steals a suitcase left on a bus not knowing what might be inside; an act which brings frightening consequences, dramatic twists and unexpected turns. The Suitcase brings together a unique partnership of venues in the North of England and the Market Theatre Johannesburg, marking the internationally renowned theatre company’s return to the UK after a five year absence. Playwright Es’kia Mphahlele is among South Africa’s greatest writers, thinkers and critics. Respected worldwide as a literary luminary, he has published many short stories, essays and novels dealing with issues of race and South Africa’s changing society. Composer Hugh Masekela is a legendary Grammy Award-winning South African musician, best known for writing anti-apartheid songs including Soweto Blues and Bring Him Back Home (Nelson Mandela). Director James Ngcobo became the first black artistic director of Market Theatre Johannesburg in 2013, and continues to enhance the theatre’s worldwide reputation for artistic greatness. He has a passion for working with undiscovered actors, young designers and artists to tell new South African stories. James Ngcobo said: “Anyone can relate to this universal tale of a man who wants to change his life. Whenever we perform this piece, people have always said that there are clear parallels with their own lives when they witness how Timi’s life unfolds.” The Market Theatre Johannesburg, known internationally as ‘Theatre of the Struggle’, challenged the apartheid regime and dared to stand up against social injustice, acting as a vital and powerful voice for freedom and emancipation. Its 21 international and over 300 South African theatre awards bear testament to the courage and artistic quality of its work. Today, the Market Theatre remains at the forefront of South African performance, actively encouraging new productions to reach international stages. Tickets for The Suitcase are on sale now and available at: www.everymanplayhouse.com/whats-on or via the Everyman Box Office.