Resources and Publications

Stimela Sendaba – The Story TrainA project by Assitej South Africa and Play Africa Children’s Museum.

How the tortoise got the cracks on his shell

Thembile Tshuma English4-8 yearsA greedy tortoise tricked the birds to lend him wings to fly to the heavens so he could enjoy their big feast. What will happen when the birds find out what he’s done? 

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Lethukuthula Blessing XabaIsiZuluAges: 3-6Lethukuthula Blessing Xaba A shabby chicken, Credo, learns that he is not like other birds. He comes of age and realizes his true place in the world!

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Aunty Nokuthula’s Stars

Khwezi BeckerIsiZulu, English Ages 3 – 6‘Aunty Nokuthula’s stars’ is a story about two children who live in the city, overlooking a harbor. They visit their aunt in the rural areas and they come back with valuable lessons. 

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Smell Thief

Thanduxolo MkoyiAges 4-10English, IsiXhosaA poor old woman is accused of stealing the smell of freshly baked bread and is taken to court for the theft. But can you really steal a smell?

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Skinning Out

Baeletsi TsatsiAges 4-6English The Maker gives his trusted messenger a message for the people of Africa, but the messenger is too excited and gets the message confused, costing the people of Africa.

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Animal Fight

Nolubabalo RaniEnglishAges 3 – 6A clumsy elephant never watched where he was going. He would stamp on the ostrich eggs. One day the Ostrich was tired of this. She decided to confront Elephant and warn him. Who manages to outsmart the other?

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Why the Sun and the Moon live in the sky

Monwabisi BangiweEnglishAges 4- 8Shango the Sun and Yemanja the water are friends, but Yemanja never comes to visit Shango. One day Yemanja comes to visit and this causes problems for Shango and his wife, Oshun

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The boy who went to look for the sun

Sizwe Vilakazi Ages 6 -10EnglishWhat happens when the sun gets tired of shining and runs away? Thabo goes on a great journey to find the sun and sees many wonderful things on his adventure.

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Ananse and the Pot of wisdom

Tsholofelo ShounyaneAges: 6-10EnglishSetswanaA story about a spider who is a wonderful storyteller. Ananse asked for wisdom from the Sun God, but decided he will hoard all that wisdom to himself. Little did he know, he could not possess all the wisdom in the world.

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ASSITEJ South Africa has published several plays and research materials.

The Ogreling
Written by Suzanne LebeauTranslated by Sindiwe MagonaThe Ogreling explores the character of a six-year-old ogre, who has to discover first of all who he is and what he is capable of, and then how to overcome those aspects of himself that he longs to escape. It is a play about the journey and struggle we all go through to overcome our shadow selves, and to become fully human. The story is told with tremendous sensitivity, intensity of feeling and richness of language, while always remaining empathetic to the central struggle of the little ogre. The English text and isiXhosa translation of this beautiful play is presented as a tool to help language learning (in either English or Xhosa), Creative Arts development and Life Orientation. The text is accompanied by educational resources and activity suggestions for use in the classroom. Aimed at Grade 7-9 learners, this is a wonderful resource for Language teachers, Life Orientation teachers and Creative Arts teachers. To order a hard copy, contact Cost is R120 plus postage. Published Cape Town: Ivy Ink 2012. 89 pages


A powerful play for teens.Dipuo has always respected her Aunt Mmaletsatsi, a reputable human rights lawyer. Now an investigation by Mmaletsatsi leads her to Theko, the protégé of the powerful and dangerous Pastor Sam. Consumed by his own power and wealth, Sam will do anything to protect his control of his world. The two young lovers of numbers use social media to communicate and share their ideals and later to challenge Sam.Written by Lalu Mokuku and Ginni Manning, this play was the winner of the ASSITEJ African Playwriting Competition in 2019. Dipalo is must read for all young people, particularly in Africa.“Dipalo is an important and timely theatre piece exploring the agency of young people in an exploitative world, and is highly relevant and engaging for teens today. This intriguing play deals with the pervasive threat of gender-based violence against the backdrop of charismatic religion. In a space that preaches safety and solace for lost souls, the dangers of the predatory and ruthless can be obscured from view. In finding one another, two young people are able to build a solidarity which strengthens them to deal with the challenges and lies that the adult world has fashioned. ASSITEJ SA exists to empower children and young people to think critically and creatively through the moments of confrontation and connection that the arts alone can provide. We look forward to Dipalo being read, acted out and engaged with by many young people, and providing a pivotal moment of realisation of the strength that resides in each of us, if we have the courage to look for it.” – Yvette Hardie, Director of ASSITEJ SA and President, ASSITEJ InternationalDipalo seems “to describe our shared spirit-filled experiences, without making them null-and-void. It centres equally on two aspects of love -love for both the scientific and the supernatural, and love as a phenomenon that young people everywhere are trying to figure out.” – Refiloe LeperePurchase hard copy (R120+ postage) by emailing, or soft copy at

Diversity, Representation and Culture in TYA

Edited by Manon van de Water Published by ASSITEJ South AfricaAuthors:Michael Carklin; Cheela Chilala; Heather Fitzsimmons Frey; Lorenzo García; Sandra Grehn; Kristin Hunt; Tom Maguire; Paulo Merisio; Carla Pires Antunes; Matthew Reason; Carla Ribeiro-Cunha; Eunice Uwadinma-Idemudia; Manon van de WaterOutline:ITYARN, the International Theatre for Young Audiences Network is the official research network of ASSITEJ. Every three years, at ASSITEJ’s World Congress and Festival, ITYARN organizes a conference, where researchers, as well as artists, from all over the world share their insights and perspectives.This is the fourth ITYARN book, compiled from two conference events, one held in 2017 in Cape Town, South Africa on “Cultural Exchange and Diversity in TYA,” coinciding with the XIXth ASSITEJ World Congress and Festival Cradle of Creativity, and one held in Kristiansand Norway on “(Re)presenting Childhood,” coinciding with the ASSITEJ Artistic Gathering Confronting the Present.Twelve presentations were selected from these events and together they offer a rich mosaic of research areas in Theatre for Young Audiences — inquiring into the portrayal of and performing for children with cognitive and physical disabilities, disrupting narratives on settlers and indigenous populations, connecting spectatorship and diversity, questioning the male gaze while watching girls perform, analyzing trauma and spiritual healing in TYA plays and performances, examining theatre for babies and theatre for/by/with young adults. Each article is framed by the individual scholar’s cultural and ideological background. This diversity of perspectives and scholarly modes of discourse contribute to furthering the research and practice in the field, opening up horizons and inspiring innovation.Price: Print version: R316.00 (incl VAT) + postageEPub version can be bought at