Chiwetel Ejiofor stars in A Season In The Congo at the Young Vic theatre (photo: Johan Persson)
Chiwetel Ejiofor stars in A Season In The Congo (photo: Johan Persson)

Young Vic stages Congo fundraiser

Published August 5, 2013

The latest hit production at the Young Vic, A Season In The Congo, is to stage an extra performance to raise funds for Oxfam’s work in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The extra performance of the acclaimed production that stars Chiwetel Ejiofor as Patrice Lumumba, the first democratically elected Prime Minister of the African nation, will be held on 14 August. A new £50 ticket has been added for the one-off fundraising performance to help in the theatre’s bid to raise £10,000.  All money raised will be used by Oxfam to help provide sanitation and clean water to a camp for DRC refugees who have fled to western Uganda.

The production, which opened in June and runs until 24 August, tells the story of the 1960 Congo rebellion, the charismatic Lumumba’s rise to power and the reaction of the country’s former Belgian rulers, the UN and those Lumumba counted as friends.

Prior to embarking on the project, Ejiofor, director Joe Wright and Young Vic Artistic Director David Lan visited the Democratic Republic of Congo with Oxfam. Speaking about the experience, Olivier Award winner Ejiofor said: “Visiting some of the camps in DRC with Oxfam, I saw some of the bleakest things I’ve ever witnessed. Thousands upon thousands of people have fled their homes in the east of the country to escape violent rebel forces. It is the sheer scale of it that is almost incomprehensible. David Lan, Joe Wright and I were all deeply moved by this experience, and this fundraiser is just a small way for us to honour the families we met who are trying to live with dignity in desperate conditions.”

"Visiting some of the camps in DRC with Oxfam, I saw some of the bleakest things I've ever witnessed."