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South Africa, 2019. Twenty-five years since the first post-apartheid democratic elections, two men from contrasting walks of life are thrust together to reflect on a quarter century of change.

  • Swan Theatre

    Stratford-upon-Avon

    Until 23 Apr 2019

    Book Tickets
  • Running time:

    1 hr 45 mins (no interval)

Next performance:

23 March, 7:30PM

Swan Theatre
Stratford-upon-Avon

Director Janice Honeyman gives a short synopsis of the story of Kunene and the King.

"The play is set in South Africa. Jack Morris (played by Antony Sher) is a white South African classical actor who is well known for performing in Shakespeare roles. He’s been offered the tile role in King Lear. He accepts it, and then discovers that he has liver cancer. He refuses to stay in the hospital and so discharges himself, and Lunga Kunene, a black South African (played by John Kani) becomes his at-home carer. 

"These two old men reflect on the politics of the country they live in, but in different ways, in their different cultures.

"The play also deals with Shakespeare, and interestingly, it’s in the Shakespeare scenes in which the two men get closest. The contrast and conflicts continue all the way through to the end of the play."