The Legend of Hamba

Tiata Fahodzi


In 1914 Hamba set off to war. He won and lost empires, became a king, a beggar, a poet and a thief. A hundred years later he is no closer to home.

The Legend of Hamba is a contemporary African mystery play created by Tiata Fahodzi, Britain’s African Theatre Company. ‘Hamba’ is an Ndebele word meaning, ‘Walk!’ or ‘Let’s go!’. Ndebele is one of the three major official languages in Zimbabwe. In everyday speech it conveys a sense of urgency and energy; metaphysically it communicates a spirit of progress, vitality and perpetual forward motion.

About Tiata Fahodzi

Tiata Fahodzi was founded in 1997 to produce contemporary African theatre for the British stage. Since 2010 its Artistic Director has been Lucian Msamati. Tiata Fahodzi’s name unites two West African languages and translates as ‘Theatre of the Emancipated’. It seeks to place the stories and creativity of Africans at the heart of British Theatre and to foster new and emerging talent.

Recent successes include Roy Williams’ Joe Guy, the tenth-anniversary revival of Joe Penhall’s Blue/Orange and Oladipo Agboluaje’s popular Nigerian political dramas The Estate (2006) and Iya Ile (The First Wife) (co-produced with Soho Theatre, 2009; Olivier Award Nomination).

In 2012 the company co-produced Belong by Bola Agbaje with the Royal Court Theatre, winning big audiences at the Royal Court and the Bussey Building in Peckham, and sharing in the 2013 Olivier Award given to the new writing season at the Court.

Tiata Fahodzi’s staging of debutant writer Denton Chikura’s comedy The Epic Adventure of Nhamo the Manyika Warrior and His Sexy Wife Chipo played at the Tricycle Theatre in London to wide acclaim and will tour in the summer of 2014.

Production Credits:

Lucian Msamati

Coral Messam

Sadeysa Greenaway Bailey

Sound Designer and Composer
Helen Skiera

Nathan Curry

Funding, commissioning and partner credits:

Co-commissioned by Without Walls, Brighton Festival, Greenwich+Docklands International Fair, Winchester Hat Fair and Watford Palace Theatre.