If We Dig unearths the historical stories of ordinary people


uli Callinicos is celebrated as one of South Africa’s leading academics and social historians. She began her involvement in the struggle for democracy at an early age and as a member of the Congress of Democrats in her youth, she wrote several protest letters to newspapers as part of a concerted campaign after the banning of the African National Congress (ANC).

Inspired by the life and work of Luli Callinicos, theatre writer and director Megan Willson has crafted, If We Dig, a delicate multi-lingual piece set against the backdrop of student uprisings and a complex societal landscape. If We Dig introduces us to some unusual characters who lived on the edges of a burgeoning mining town, each with unique stories of their struggles, dreams and challenges, woven together in a common humanity.

Last year, Johannesburg audiences were able to get a sneak one-week preview of If We Dig as a solo play when Fiona Ramsay played the role of Callinicos. For its season at the Market Theatre this year, Willson has re-imagined the play as a two-hander with 2017 Sophie Mgcina Award recipient, Lesedi Job, starring alongside Ramsay.

Fiona Ramsay and Lesedi Job takes us through a delicate journey of the multi-lingual piece that will ignite a complex societal landscape of emotions. Willson sharpens the focus onto women’s stories – seldom remembered, seen or told. If We Dig is a richly-textured memory play which highlights the contradictions and personal journeys of women, growing up and growing old in Denver, Bosmont, Wattville, Doornfontein, Boksburg and Hillbrow. Their narratives come alive in If We Dig and it reminds us of the qualities that connect us – identity, resilience, community, dreams and work.

Fiona Ramsay, a theatre veteran, gives spellbinding performances in every role she undertakes. She set her new record when for the first time in the 12-year history of the Naledi Theatre Awards the same actress won the Best Lead Performance in a Play (Female) for two different plays.

Lesedi Job performed in James Ngcobo’s production of A Raisin in the Sun at the Market Theatre. Her other roles include performing in Fisher’s of Hope at the Baxter Theatre, Ketekang at the Market Theatre and Curl Up & Dye at the Auto & General Theatre.

If We Dig anchors the Market Theatre’s programming for Women’s Month with a new production that unearths real stories of the women who created and shaped Johannesburg and the country we live in.


Author and Director
Lighting Design
Set and Costume
Stage Manager

Megan Wilson
Nomvula Molepo
Nadya Cohen
Malebo Mokoto

Fiona Ramsay
Lesedi Job

Season:  09 August – 27 August 2017 

Age Recommendation
Show times

The Barney Simon
@The Market Theatre
7 years
70 minutes
No interval
Tuesdays to Saturdays @ 20h15 and Sunday @15h15


Student Price
Tuesday – Thursday
Friday – Sunday

R 70.00
R 90.00
R 150.00

To make block bookings, please contact Anthony Ezeoke 011 832 1641ext 203 or Yusrah Bardien at 011 832 1641 ext 204.

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