‘Held my breath for 80 minutes… utterly riveting’ @helenjerome
‘Electrifying… gripping, searingly intelligent’ @mkmswain
‘Another must see from Hamps_Theatre’ @BennettFox
1997, Pretoria Central Prison, South Africa. Psychologist Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela prepares to sit opposite the apartheid regime’s most notorious assassin.
A member of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, she is interviewing Eugene de Kock while he serves 212 years for crimes against humanity, murder, conspiracy to murder, attempted murder, assault, kidnapping, illegal possession of firearms, and fraud.
How did he become one of the most reviled figures in apartheid history? Is Pumla able to overcome her disgust and hate for this monster and find the human within? And will he even be prepared to open up and tell an educated black woman the truth?
Nicholas Wright makes his Hampstead Downstairs debut following his sell-out hit The Last of the Duchess on the Main Stage in 2011. A Human Being Died That Night is based on the best-selling book of the same name by Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela and explores her extraordinary interviews with Eugene de Kock, her time on the TRC, and how a fundamentally moral person could become a mass murderer.
Director Jonathan Munby makes his Hampstead Theatre debut. Theatre credits include A Number (Menier Chocolate Factory), Company (Sheffield Crucible), The Prince of Homburg, Life is a Dream (Donmar Warehouse) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare’s Globe).
Matthew Marsh returns to Hampstead Theatre to play Eugene de Kock, following No Naughty Bits in 2011. His previous credits include The Last of the Haussmans, Blood and Gifts (both National Theatre), Proof (Mernier Chocolate Factory) and the Oscar winning film The Iron Lady.
Hampstead also welcomes back Olivier Award winner Noma Dumezweni, as Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, following Little Eagles (2011). Her theatre credits include Feast, A Raisin in the Sun (both Young Vic), Romeo and Juliet and Julius Caesar (both RSC).
‘Both Dumezweni and Marsh give intelligent and at times emotional performances, which afford insight into how apartheid shaped the psyche of the different South African people’ Thesouthafrican.com
Approximate running time is 1 hour and 20 minutes with no interval
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