Isango Ensemble is a South African theatre company that draws its artists mainly from the townships surrounding Cape Town. Our stage productions and films have played to sold-out audiences across the world, and we’ve received numerous international awards. Isango’s productions re-imagine classics from the Western theatre canon, finding a new context for the stories within a South African or township setting thereby creating inventive work relevant to the heritage of the nation. Our company’s structure embraces artists at all stages of their creative development allowing senior artists to lead and contribute towards the growth of rising talents.
We are committed to creating theatre that is accessible to all South Africans and to contributing to a more united South African nation. Isango’s award-winning flim U-Carmen eKhayelitsha and our second film Son of Man were filmed on location in Khayelitsha and propelled this historically disadvantaged township into the international spotlight. Local residents were given the opportunity to be part of the films and U-Carmen premiered in Khayelitsha’s O. R. Tambo Sports Centre, playing there for three weeks to excited audiences. We intend to further develop this process by building a truly mixed audience, reflecting and uniting our diverse South African nation.
“The Isango Ensemble is unique. I believe no other theatre group in the world so successfully brings old theatre classics into a modern, wholly African expression.”
Sir Ian Mckellen, Isango Ensemble Patron
“…Thank you too for proving apartheid so abominably wrong. You have helped restore our faith in ourselves. Fantastic.”
Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, October 2011