Kunene and the King tickets

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Don’t miss John Kani’s highly acclaimed play Kunene and the King marking the 25th anniversary of the end of apartheid with a strictly limited London run, following its premiere in Stratford-upon-Avon and a sold-out run in Cape Town. 

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. Jack Morris is a celebrated classical actor who’s just been given both a career-defining role and a life-changing diagnosis. Besides his age, Jack has seemingly little in common with his at-home nurse Lunga Kunene, but the two men soon discover their shared passion for Shakespeare, which ignites this ‘rich, raw and shattering head-to-head’ (The Times). 

Written by South African actor, activist and playwright John Kani (Black Panther, The Island, Sizwe Banzi is Dead), this refreshingly funny and vital new play is directed by Janice Honeyman (Vice Versa; The Tempest, 2009) and sees fellow South African Antony Sher (King Lear, 2016 & 2018; Death of a Salesman) perform alongside John Kani in two exceptionally moving performances, with live music and vocals by Lungiswa Plaatjies completing the company. 

Book now for this ‘fascinating and necessary’ (Financial Times) play, co-produced by the Royal Shakespeare Company and Cape Town’s Fugard Theatre, as it transfers to the Ambassadors Theatre for nine weeks only from 24 January 2020.

Kunene and the King reviews

12 reviews
Verified purchase
12 Mar 2020

This show is brilliantly performed, a fantastic performance from both men. The show takes you on an emotional journey

Verified purchase
20 Feb 2020

Well written and brilliantly performed piece which illuminates relationships and dynamics between black and white South Africans 25 years on from the ending of apartheid.

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17 Feb 2020

Acting was phenomenal - story line moving! Very well written! A must see!

Gary Janks
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16 Feb 2020

Brilliant performance and script, bot Kani and Cher were outstanding. So funny and sad at the same time.

Angela Stone
Verified purchase
16 Feb 2020

I felt it was a privilege to be in the audience yesterday afternoon. Two theatrical greats onstage with the of the greatest of all, Shakespeare, overshadowing the performance. I noted with pleasure, the bust of WS moving to Soweto. Sher & Kani complemented each other beautifully, opposites in so many ways , both in their own personas & in the characters they inhabited so that their ultimate coming together & the great leveller - death brought peace to one & perhaps the resolution to continue to strive for the respect both he, & his struggling new nation ultimately deserve. The script sometimes tipped over into sentimentality, but the skilled playing made light of it. The historical references to apartheid were well worth including , as many in the audience would either have forgotten or not known the background to the attitudes the two men held. Altogether, an unforgettable experience for this regular theatregoer, who has seen to enormous 3 plus hour productions in the past weeks & two 90 minute plays, both of which moved me & will stay with me long after the other two are forgotten.



West St, London WC2H 9ND

Cancellation Policy

No Exchanges, no refunds after purchase.


1hr 36 – No Interval

Good To Know

Please note this show contains strobe lighting, strong language, and some scenes that audiences may find upsetting.

Suitable For Children

Please note this show contains strobe lighting, strong language, and some scenes that audiences may find upsetting.

Venue Info

Ambassadors Theatre, London

When Can I Go

24 Jan - 28 Mar 2020

Where Do I Go

Ambassador's Theatre

West St, London WC2H 9ND