Skip to main content

Mustapha Matura

1939-2019

Born: Trinidad and Tobago, 1939

Biography

Mustapha Matura (17 December 1939 – 29 October 2019), born Noel Mathura, was an award-winning Trinidadian playwright living in London. Characterised by critic Michael Billington as “a pioneering black playwright who opened the doors for his successors”, Matura was the first British-based dramatist of colour to have a play in London’s West End, with Play Mas in 1974 which won him the Evening Standard’s ‘Most Promising Playwright’ Award. In 1978, he co-founded the Black Theatre Co-operative with Charlie Hanson. Matura was revered for his witty and often political plays set in his home country, including Playboy of the West Indies, Three Sisters (after Chekov) and Rum an’ Coca-Cola. He was a prolific creator of things: screenplays, short stories, poems, sketches, paintings and songs, all inspired by his eclectic life story and curiosity about people and life. Famous works of his include Welcome Home Jacko, The Coup, Nice, Meetings among other notable works. He is survived by his wife, Ingrid Selberg.

In 2021, the Mustapha Matura Award and Mentoring Programme was set up in his memory to co-exist alongside the Alfred Fagon Award. The award is aimed at Black playwrights of Caribbean and African descent aged 25 and under and includes a cash prize of £3,000 and a nine month mentoring programme with a leading Black British playwright.

Productions

Bread

Bread

Year: 1976

Staged in: National Theatre; 1963-

The Coup

The Coup

Year: 1991

Staged in: National Theatre; 1963-

Meetings

Meetings

Year: 1982

Staged in: Black Theatre Co-operative; 1979

More More

More More

Year: 1978

Staged in: Black Theatre Co-operative; 1979

My Enemy

My Enemy

Year: 1970

Staged in: Ambiance Lunch Hour Theatre Club

Nice

Nice

Year: 1973

Staged in: Inter-Action

Indian

Indian

Year: 1970

Staged in: Ambiance Lunch Hour Theatre Club

One Rule

One Rule

Year: 1981

Staged in: Black Theatre Co-operative; 1979

Party

Party

Year: 1970

Staged in: Ambiance Lunch Hour Theatre Club

Play Mas

Play Mas

Year: 1974

Staged in: English Stage Company

Playboy of the West Indies

Playboy of the West Indies

Year: 1984

Staged in: Oxford Playhouse Company

Rum an' Coca Cola

Rum an' Coca Cola

Year: 1976

Staged in: Plays in Schools Project

Small World, A

Small World, A

Year: 1996

Staged in: World Theatre Season

Three Sisters

Three Sisters

Year: 2006

Staged in: Eclipse Theatre Company; 2003

Independence

Independence

Year: 1979

Staged in: Foco Novo

Dying Business, A

Dying Business, A

Year: 1980

Staged in: Black Theatre Co-operative; 1979

Dialogue

Dialogue

Year: 1970

Staged in: Ambiance Lunch Hour Theatre Club

Black Slaves - White Chains

Black Slaves - White Chains

Year: 1975

Staged in: English Stage Company

Bakerloo Line

Bakerloo Line

Year: 1972

Staged in: Inter-Action

Another Tuesday

Another Tuesday

Year: 1978

Staged in: Black Theatre Co-operative; 1979

As Time Goes By

As Time Goes By

Year: 1971

Staged in: English Stage Company

Trinidad Sisters

Trinidad Sisters

Year: 1988

Staged in: The Tricycle Theatre

Welcome Home Jacko

Welcome Home Jacko

Year: 1979

Staged in: Black Theatre Co-operative; 1979

Publications

Playboy of the West Indies

Playboy of the West Indies

Year: 2010

Publisher: Oberon Modern Plays

Three Sisters by A.P. Chekov and Mustapha Matura

Three Sisters by A.P. Chekov and Mustapha Matura

Year: 2006

Publisher: Oberon Books

Six Plays: As Time Goes By; Play Mas; Independence; Welcome Home Jacko; Nice; Meetings

Six Plays: As Time Goes By; Play Mas; Independence; Welcome Home Jacko; Nice; Meetings

Year: 1992

Publisher: Methuen Drama

The Coup

The Coup

Year: 1991

Publisher: Methuen Drama

Play Mas; Independence; Meetings

Play Mas; Independence; Meetings

Year: 1982

Publisher: Methuen Publishing

Nice, Rum an' Coca Cola and Welcome Home Jacko : Three Plays by Mustapha Matura

Nice, Rum an' Coca Cola and Welcome Home Jacko : Three Plays by Mustapha Matura

Year: 1980

Publisher: Methuen New Theatre Script

Featured Content

That Black Theatre Podcast

Listen to hosts Nadine and Nadia discuss the theatre of the 1970s, exploring the works of Mustapha Matura.

Mustapha Matura discuss his career

Watch Mustapha Matura (1939-2019) discuss his work and lengthy career as a playwright.

Mustapha Matura on his play The Coup

Watch Mustapha Matura discuss his 1991 play, The Coup , which was first performed in the Cottesloe (Dorfman) at the National Theatre.

Contact Us

Help improve this page

Do you have information about this or other productions that could help improve our records?