Kani and Ntshona, who earned Tony Awards for their work in the 1974 production of Sizwe Banzi Is Dead, will reprise their roles for the BAM production. The actors were previously seen at BAM in a 2003 staging of The Island.
Sizwe Banzi Is Dead was revived in 2006 for the Baxter Theatre Centre at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, South Africa, and subsequently transferred to London's National Lyttelton Theatre in March 2007. It is this production that will play the famed Brooklyn venue.
The 1972 work – penned by Anthol Fugard, John Kani and Winston Ntshona — "tells the story of a man ordered to leave a district because he lacks the proper permit," according to production notes. "He trades his name for a number and begins life as a dead man, wreaking havoc with his identity and sense of right and wrong. Delicately balancing humor and pathos, the work offers both a psychological history of the apartheid nightmare and timeless parables of the dehumanizing paradoxes of power."
Sizwe Banzi Is Dead will feature lighting design by Mannie Manim.
A BAMdialogue with John Kani and Winston Ntshona, moderated by Anne Cattaneo, will follow the April 10 performance. The event is free for those with tickets to that performance of Sizwe Banzi Is Dead. Sizwe Banzi Is Dead will play ten performances at BAM's Harvey Theater through April 19. Tickets are available by calling (718) 636-4100 or by visiting www.BAM.org.