Handspring Puppet Company with William Kentridge and Jane Taylor

“Ubu and the Truth Commission”

Ubu and the Truth Commission

Mongi Mthombeni, Dawid Minnaar, Gabriel Marchand in “Ubu and the Truth Commission”

© Luke Younge

  • Duration 1h 30
  • In English with German surtitles

Past Dates

Following “Woyzeck on the Highveld” from 1993 and “Faustus in Africa!” from 1995, “Ubu and the Truth Commission” (1997) is the third theatre production in which William Kentridge cooperated with the legendary Handspring Puppet Company from Cape Town. The piece, written by South African novelist and playwright Jane Taylor, combines Alfred Jarry’s “Ubu Roi” from the year 1896 with the work of the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission since 1996. It finds an ambiguous meaning between the founding text of absurd theatre and this protocol of historic events. Excerpts of the film “Ubu Tells the Truth” alongside other video animation by Kentridge are an essential element of this theatre piece and an example of how topics and motifs find varying forms of expression in Kentridge’s oeuvre.

Dawid Minnaar actor
Busi Zokufa actor
Gabriel Marchand puppeteer
Mandiseli Maseti puppeteer
Mongi Mthombeni puppeteer

Director William Kentridge
Associate director Janni Younge
Text Jane Taylor
Puppet design Adrian Kohler
Assistant puppet maker Tau Qwelane
Animation William Kentridge
Assistant animators Tau Qwelane, Suzie Gable
Set design Adrian Kohler, William Kentridge
Costume design Adrian Kohler
Costume makers Phyllis Midlane, Sue Steele
Light Wesley France
Sound design Wilbert Schubel
Music Warrick Sony, Brendan Jury
Choreography Robyn Orlinä
Animation editor Catherine Meyburgh
TRC research Antjie Krog
Film and video research Gail Berhmann
Technical director Wesley France
Stage manager Bruce Koch
Sound technician Simon Mahoney

Ubu and the Truth Commission. [Video trailer]

© Quaternaire

Production: Handspring Puppet Company, in association with Quaternaire
“Ubu and the Truth Commission” was co-commissioned by Edinburgh International Festival (Edinburgh, UK), The Taipei Arts Festival and Taipei Culture Foundation (Taipei, Taiwan), Festival de Marseille _ danse et arts multiples (Marseille, France), Onassis Cultural Centre (Athens, Greece), Cal Performances Berkeley (Berkeley USA), BOZAR (Brussels, Belgium). Supported by National Arts Festival, South Africa.
Handspring Puppet Company is represented worldwide by Quaternaire ( / Sarah Ford.