Restaging Ubu and the Truth Commission

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More About This Title Restaging Ubu and the Truth Commission


First premiered in South Africa at the Grahamstown Festival in 1997, the play Ubu and the Truth Commission is being restaged around the world to mark the occasion of 20 years after the end of apartheid. Over its life it has become a set work in drama courses locally and internationally. The play is a collaboration between writer Jane Taylor, artist William Kentridge, and Basil Jones and Adrian Kohler of the Handspring Puppet Company, recently acclaimed for their play War Horse, which has toured the world. The script, together with a selection of William Kentridge’s drawings, and photographs taken from the performance showing the puppets and performers, brings together the powerful multimedia effects of the stage performance. And in this revised edition, the writer, director and puppeteers have added to their notes accompanying the play, reflecting on what the play means 20 years after it was first performed.


Professor Jane Taylor holds the Wole Soyinka Chair of Drama and Theatre Studies at the University of Leeds in the UK. She is a South African who has worked extensively across creative arts and literary/cultural scholarship. She has been for several years a Visiting Professor at the University of Chicago. She has been a Visiting Fellow at Oxford and at Cambridge, and has been a recipient of Mellon and Rockefeller Fellowships. In 2015 she held the visiting position of Avenali Chair of the Humanities at the University of Berkeley, California. Taylor has a scholarly and creative interest in puppetry and has written plays for Handspring Puppet Company (makers of War Horse). She edited the critical study of Handspring Puppet Company, and is on the Board of the Company.