Brett Goldin: Remembered on his 40th birthday

Theatres, galleries and rehearsal rooms are often named after artists. It is rare that a boardroom is ever named after an artist and yet boardrooms are the most productive when it lends itself as a space for innovation, creative thinking and out of the box problem-solving. In the entrance hall of the Market Square in Johannesburg the Brett Goldin Boardroom, named after slain South Africa Brett Goldin takes pride of place.

“It is in the Brett Goldin Boardroom that the seeds are planted for our business operations and creative output”, says Ismail Mahomed. “We find inspiration from the passion and vision of dynamic creatives like Brett Goldin”.

The young actor would have celebrated his 40th birthday tomorrow. Unfortunately, he was murdered in 2006 alongside a friend Richard Bloom, a fashion designer who was a label manager for the Maze clothing company in Cape Town.

At the time of his death, Goldin was scheduled to perform the role of Guildenstern in the Baxter Theatre’s production of Hamlet, directed by Janet Suzman.  The production was to be staged in Shakespeare’s hometown, Stratford-upon-Avon to launch the prestigious Royal Shakespeare’ Company’s Complete Works Festival.

Shortly after Goldin’s murder, the Baxter Theatre Centre in Cape Town and the Actors Centre in Johannesburg together with the Royal Shakespeare Theatre Company founded the Brett Goldin Bursary Fund in his memory. The fund was kick-started with donations from respected South African-born actor Sir Anthony Sher and Honorary RSC Associate, Dame Janet Suzman. The first winner of the bursary was Omphile Molusi, an alumnus of the Market Theatre Laboratory.

“The Brett Goldin Bursary was a turning point in the story of my life that brought a lot of hope and light. More than anything, it gave my voice a bigger platform where I could be heard and seen,” says Omphile Molusi, whose production Itsoseng is prescribed for schools. The production has also enjoyed return seasons over the past ten years.

“By naming our boardroom after Brett Goldin, we wanted pay homage to a career that was cut short. Brett Goldin was a passionate thespian and a dreamer of infinite opportunities”, says James Ngcobo, the Artistic Director of the Market Theatre Foundation.

Earlier this year, Brett Goldin’s mother, Denise Goldin, visited the Market Square. She was moved by the way in which the Market Theatre Foundation has chosen to honour Brett Goldin’s legacy.

“We are saddened that Brett has not lived to enjoy his 40th year birthday but we feel an enormous sense of satisfaction each time we engage with our teams and stakeholders in the Brett Goldin Boardroom. Our meetings are short and productive. Our goals are dynamic and focused. We are determined to build the kind of creative economy that Brett Goldin would have been proud of. We wish Denise Goldin strength and comfort,” says Ismail Mahomed, the CEO of the Market Theatre Foundation.


For further information and interviews please contact:

Lusanda Zokufa – Kathilu, Senior Publicist
Market Theatre Foundation
011 832 1641 ext 123 or 072 367 7867