A copy of 'The Complete Works of Shakespeare' smuggled into a prison is the starting point for this evening of performance and discussion.
Robben Island is the prison in which Nelson Mandela was held for 18 years, and a global symbol of the apartheid struggle. When Sonny Venkathrathnam, an inmate, smuggled in a copy of 'The Complete Works of Shakespeare', it became a treasure, passed between his fellow prisoners, who memorised and wrote down extracts of the work.
Theatre director Matthew Hahn has turned this story into a play, featuring extracts of Shakespeare intercut with testimony of the prisoners.
This event presents extracts from the work read by Chuk Iwuji, Vincent Ebrahim and Cornelius Macarthy. Before this staged reading, Ashwin Desai gives a keynote talk based on his book 'Reading Revolution - Shakespeare on Robben Island'.