Nine Plays Incubate and Reflect Social Themes

It’s no coincidence that the coming together of the six state-funded Performing Arts Institutions (PAI’s) will take place during June as The Market Theatre is renowned for giving a platform for new voices. The Theatre celebrates its 41st birthday on 18 June 2017 as we welcome delegates from around the country.


June, being Youth Month in South Africa, is a special time for this coming together of young creative minds. The productions presented during the inaugural Arts Incubator Trade Fair ignite interest and resonate with young audiences in ways that will confront their inner beliefs, values and emotions. There will be nine productions presented by the country’s Performing Arts Institutions during the Trade Fair which will take place from Sunday 18 June to Saturday 24 June 2017.


Presented by The Market Theatre Foundation Isithunzi sharpens the lens when the two sons of one of the women humiliated in the “Reitz Four” video incident that took place at the University of Free State, where four white male students showed despicable behaviour towards a group of black middle-aged women. Isithunzi is the 2016 winning production of the 24th Zwakala Festival.


Everyone has it, presented by Artscape, is a human story about Mzubanzi, a young man born in the Eastern Cape, who is abandoned after birth and raised by his grandmother. Presented Everyone has it will challenge an audience to go with Mzubanzi on his journey of self-discovery after the strong matriach’s death has forced him to rediscover who he is or who he was?


Inspired by post- apartheid youth, The Playhouse Company presents, “/’fri:dəm/ “, which draws on classical South African theatre works, images and sound to find meaning for what we have achieved as a country, what challenges we have faced and how we deal with it. “/’fri:dəm/”  invites an audience to takes a retrospective look at what freedom means today. 

Presented by PACOFS and inspired by the Zakes Mda’s novel She Plays with Darkness, Gogoa Mamoya explores the complex issue of spiritual affliction and mental disorder in African culture. Drawing on release movement technique, this dance duet explores the contrast between light and darkness and how these exist in human nature when a child is afflicted with mental disorder.


If The World Was Listening, presented by The Playhouse Company, is a breath-taking contemporary dance work that will captivate as it takes the audience on a journey that probes deep into the mind of self-discovery. In a world of layers and complexities, haste and noise; one would wonder, if the world would pause and turn a willing ear to one’s mouth what would you say?


Speaking from Experience is a journey on the wings of poetry and music. Presented by The State Theatre and supported by a live band, a poet’s voice soars to share his life-time experiences and those of others. The production is described as “an emotional journey of awareness”.


Presented by PACOFS, Steke, performed by a female duo, consists of real life stories about love, hate, anger, boredom, reality, nothing, abstract things, ideas, beliefs, fashion, and finally “sex”. This cabaret style production tackles issues about gender and sexuality.


Turning tables, presented by The State Theatre, sharpens the spotlight on marriage as referenced in the Bible. When traumatic memories of the past visits Mahlomola, he fails to quench his wife’s thirst. The tables turn when his wife obsessively turns her attention to cards. Will their obsessions tear their relationship apart?


Presented by Windyborw Arts Centre, Itsoseng, meaning ‘wake yourself up’, paints a compelling portrait of an impoverished community desperate for change. Lacking basic services, proper schooling, sanitation and housing Lesedi Job’s recreation of Itsoseng offers a personal view of post-apartheid township life. The play is presented in Setswana with a touch of English.


The Trade Fair at The Market Theatre, is a week- long of celebration of plays, exhibitions and workshops funded by the Department of Arts & Culture.


The programme of theatre, dance and poetry performances will take place in the John Kani and the Ramolao Makhene at the Market Theatre complex. Tickets will be sold at an affordable rate of R30.00 making it possible for patrons to see as many shows as possible. A season ticket will be available at R100 per person for Saturday 24 June 2017 performances. Bookings will open at Webtickets on Wednesday 24 May 2017.


The inaugural Incubator’s Trade Fair is presented with a grant secured by the Market Theatre Foundation from the Department of Arts and Culture.


“The Incubator Arts Fair funded by the DAC is an effective vehicle for the DAC to highlight the key role that it can play to assist emerging artists to acquire additional skills that will lead to productive careers in the performing and visual arts industries” said Penny Morris, the Market Theatre’s fundraiser and stakeholder relationships manager.


Arts and entertainment corporates and cultural organisations who would like to take an exhibition table at the Arts Incubator’s Trade Fair can write to Donna McLaggan at


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