York Theatre Royal and ETT in association with Alison Holder present:
Mugabe, My Dad & Me
York Theatre Royal, 9 – 18 September
Written by Tonderai Munyevu
Performed by Tonderai Munyevu and Millicent Chapanda
Director John R. Wilkinson
Designer Nicolai Hart-Hansen
Sound Designer and Composer Nigel Glasgow
Tonderai Munyevu was born in 1982 Zimbabwe, what they call the “born frees” – one of the generation born in the 1980s after independence.
He tells us how the first cracks of prosperous Zimbabwe’s decline began to appear in the 1990s, and how he emigrated with his mother to England, where he has since remained. How his father lost his job at the hands of a white man, and how this changed both their lives irrevocably, until his father’s death prompted Tonderai to question his identity and what it means to return ‘home’.
Interspersing his dialogue with the audience are Robert Mugabe’s speeches: ranging from the 1980s figure in a Savile Row suit to the bitter and derisive missives from the 1990s, up until 2017 when Mugabe was ousted by a political coup.
Tonderai Munyevu writes and performs. His writing credits for the stage include The Moors (Tara Arts Theatre), Harare Files: 700,000 People Lost Their Homes (Harare International Festival of the Arts), and Zhe [Noun] Undefined (Soho Theatre, international tour). For radio, his writing credits include The Tranquil Minds. As an actor, his theatre credits include Black Men Walking (Royal Court Theatre), Treasure Island (Birmingham Rep), The Man Who Almost Killed Himself (Edinburgh Festival Fringe), Sizwe Banzi Is Dead (Young Vic), and Zhe [Noun] Undefined (Soho Theatre). Munyevu is co-Artistic Director of Two Gents Productions.
Millicent Chapanda is a Shona cultural artist and performs vocals, mbira, ngoma drum and hosho shakers.
This world premiere production is directed by York Theatre Royal Artistic Associate John R. Wilkinson, whose theatre credits include Hello and Goodbye, Swallows and Amazons, Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down (York Theatre Royal), Talking Heads (Leeds Playhouse), Winter (Young Vic – for which he won the 2018 Genesis Future Directors Award), and The Drowned World (National Theatre Studio).