The Market Theatre. Picture: Supplied
The Market Theatre. Picture: Supplied

The Market Theatre bids farewell to CEO Ismail Mahomed

By Staff Reporter Time of article published May 9, 2020

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Ismail Mahomed has resigned from his position as the Chief Executive Officer of The Market Theatre Foundation. 

Mahomed took the reins at the Market Theatre Foundation in August 2016 after his 8-year stint as the Artistic Director of the National Arts Festival. 

With more than 35 years-experience in the arts sector, he is a multi-award-winning cultural administrator. His last working day at the Market Theatre Foundation will on June 30.

The Chairman of Council, Gerald Themba Dumas, notes the Council's appreciation of Mahomed's service and dedication to the Market Theatre Foundation during his tenure.

Commenting on Mahomed's departure, Dumas said: "The Market Theatre Foundation excelled both locally and internationally during Ismail Mahomed’s tenure and this is evident by the many awards and accolades won by the Market Theater Foundation. 

"The partnerships fostered by him and his team go a long way in maintaining the MTF’s position as a leading international arts institution."

Mahomed has overseen the operations and provided leadership for the Market Theatre Foundation’s four business units Market Theatre, Market Theatre Laboratory, Market Photo Workshop and the Windybrow Arts Centre and developed a unified administrative system across all the divisions which included a revision of several policies and the development of standard operating procedures. 

He drove the activation of the Windybrow Arts Centre as a multi-cultural business unit of the Market Theatre Foundation and in partnership with the Coloured Cube and Sticky Situations established the two Pan-African Reading Rooms at the Centre. 

He directed the restructuring and re-envisioning of the Market Theatre Laboratory and under the leadership of Clara Vaughan championed the Market Theatre Laboratory into becoming an income generating business unit which has diversified and grown its programming and footprint extensively without losing any of its core commitment to provide quality and accessible education for historically marginalized students. 

He also re-activated the Kippies venue which had remained dormant for over ten years and which now serves as an alternative space directed by Jefferson Tshabalala for independent artists. 

He supported the establishment of the Kwasha Theatre Company for new young graduates which since its establishment in 2018 has been able to secure international funding, win awards and secure invitations to international tours. 

He introduced an internship programme at the Market Theatre Foundation for new graduates. 

Mahomed has strengthened partnerships through various international diplomatic missions which have resulted in international collaborations with artists from the African continent Europe, Asia and North & South Americas. 

This also led to several fully funded international exchanges programmes for various personnel, and which included MTF personnel participating in cultural exchange programmes in South Korea, Columbia, United Arab Emirates, Netherlands, France, UK and the USA. 

“With the support of the Council, colleagues and stakeholders who remained focused to our core objective of serving our artists and audiences we were able to achieve several more milestones at the Market Theatre Foundation. 

"I want to thank the many partners and stakeholders whom I have had the privilege to work with so that we could collectively build on the legacy of the founding fathers of the Market Theatre Foundation”, said Mahomed.

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