The Suitcase returns to The Market Theatre after sold out international season


ollowing a critically acclaimed and sold out season during a five-week tour of the UK, the Market Theatre’s production, THE SUITCASE, adapted and directed by James Ngcobo’s from the short story be Es’kia Mphahlele returns to the Market Theatre. The production played in Hull, Lancaster, Newcastle, Liverpool and Derby. Esteemed guests who saw the production in the UK include the former Head of the UN, Kofi Annan, accompanied by his wife.

THE SUITCASE features an all-star cast of Masasa Mbangeni, Siyabonga Thwala, Desmond Dube and Nokukhanya Dlamini. The six-week season in the John Kani Theatre will give theatre-lovers the same proudly-Mzansi experience that made UK audiences give it rousing standing ovations and glowing accolades.

Adapted from Es’kia Mphahlele’s short story set in the 1950’s, THE SUITCASE is an enthralling love story about a young couple who, despite family disapproval of their marriage, leave for the city, intending to return wealthy and immune from social censure. The pressures of the city, unemployment and poverty strip away the husband`s self-esteem and he starts to lose his moral compass. He is so desperate to provide for his pregnant wife that he steals a suitcase left on a bus. This action leads to frightening consequences, dramatic turns and unexpected twists.

James Ngcobo’s revival and re-imagination of his 2006 hit play will include original music by Bheki Khoza to add an exciting new dimension to the much-loved classic. Ngcobo’s production is evocative, visual and moving. It encompasses African storytelling and lyrical music. He mines the enormous theatrical potential of this poignant and emotive story.

Ngcobo is a multi-award-winning director and actor. He has a long history with brokering meaningful partnerships with international theatres. Last year Ngcobo brought the Market Theatre and Royal Court Theatre together and produced I See You which received the Best Production Award at this year’s Naledi Theatre Awards.

Ticket sales are open at or at the Market Theatre Box office.


Original Text
Adapted and Directed by
Lighting Designer
Set Designer
Costume Designer
Stage Manager

Es’kia Mphahlele
James Ngcobo
Wesley France
Nadya Cohen
Nthabiseng Makone
Bongani Motsepe

Bheki Khoza
Desmond Dube
Gugu Shezi
John Lata
Masasa Mbangeni
Nokukhanya Dlamini
Nomfundo Dlamini
Siyabonga Thwala

Music Composer and Musician
Namhla Ngobese
Timi Ngobese


Friday 20 October –
Sunday 26 November 2017

Age Recommendation:
Show times:

The John Kani
@The Market Theatre
All ages
1hr 35minutes
Tuesday to Saturday @ 20h00
Sunday @15h00


Tuesday – Thursday
Friday – Saturday

R 90.00
R 150.00
R 130.00

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

For further information, interviews and images, contact: