Stuart Palmer

Chairperson, Company Director, Actor, facilitator, scriptwriter and director

Stuart has been involved in theatre for over 50 years. His passion for theatre turned professional in 2001 and he has not looked back since. He has been involved in many film and theatre productions as actor, director, writer, producer, company director and general dog’s body. He is also a inspiringPublic Speaker and Team Builder.

Stuart spent 3 years in retail management and as many as an English teacher before becoming a partner at the helm of Jungle Theatre Company in Cape Town for 7 years where he gained extensive experience in community and school based educational theatre.

Stuart formed Lunchbox Theatre in 2007 and now combines all his life experiences in the managing and growing of this Development Theatre Organisation.

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Mncedisi Ncedani

Actor, Facilitator, Project Manager and Dreamer

Mnce has been involved in theatre for many years and graduated from New Africa Theatre in 1998. He has, in the past, created a number of shows that have featured at the Ikwezi Festival at The Baxter Theatre and at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival.

His work with Lunchbox Theatre includes performances in ‘Khokho’s Suitcase’, ‘The Whale Show’, ‘The Last Drop’ , Great Eden to Addo Adventure, ‘A Dog’s Life’ and ‘The Tree Show’. He led the Ubumnandi Theatre Factory project in Knysna in 2009 and was co creator of the Water Awareness DVD for the Knysna Municipality . He was also a key facilitator in the 2010 recycling program in local Bitou schools .

Mnce led the ‘Khokho’s Suitcase’ tour to Jo’burg ‘s festival of Fame in 2009 and has greatly assisted in project management of Tshisa Talent and the annual Plett Street Festival. He facilitates drama at Murray High School for the After School Activities Programme and has led his groups to the finals of the 2012 Eden Drama Festival.

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Amanda Valela

Actor, Dancer and Facilitator

Amanda comes from a dance background and has attended many dance festivals since her first performance at the National Dance Festival in Upington in 2004. She has managed and directed various dance groups in her community since 2003 including the Tshisa Talent 2012 finalists, Fiesta Girls. Amanda began her acting career at the Ikwezi Festival in Cape Town in 2003. Since joining Lunchbox Theatre in 2008 she has performed in ‘Khokho’s Suitcase’, ‘A Dog’s Life’, ‘The Tree Show’, ‘Marley and Farley’, ‘Starry Road’ and ‘The Oyster Puppet Show’. She played a vital role in the creation of these shows through her choreography and co-directing skills. Amanda has devised and directed dance, drama and music workshops at 4 successive Knysna Oyster Kids Festivals. She is currently head dance facilitator and Program Coordinator for LBT’s After School Activities Program.

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Nkho Xipula

Nkho is a dancer at heart having performed many social awareness shows and gumboot dance performances. He performs in “Thand’ Impilo”, “The Tree Show” and the “The Last Drop”. Nko played a vital role judging and assisting with teh Tshisa Talent Competitions. He is also an ASAP drama facilitator at Phakamisani Primary. He appeared with Amanda and Mnce at the Ikwezi Festival in 2003.

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Siyabulela Zabo


Siya joined LBT in 2008 through the Skills Development and Job Creation Program. He has performed in ‘A Dog’s Life’ , “Proud of Plett’ and “The Tree Show”. He is the Stage Manager at the Tshisa Talent and Open Mic sessions.

Gailene Isaks

Gailene joined the team through the Actor Training Programme funded by the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund .She is hilarious and a great asset to the team.

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Nomzamo Maga

Actor, facilitator

Nomzamo performed in local church plays and with Youth Futures Data before joining LBT in 2008 through the Skills Development and Job Creation Programme.

Zaza has performed at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival. She was a founder cast member of The Tree Show. Zaza has proven her value as a facilitator at the PnP Knysna Young Oyster Festival and teaches children dance for the After Schools Activities Program.

Shanette Elliot

Marketing Manager

Shanette Elliot, the Marketing Manager for Lunchbox Theatre, believes that she has the best job ever. Starting out as a primary school teacher Shanette spent most of her life communicating in the fields of advertising, public relations, incentive motivation and local governance. Since joining Lunchbox Theatre in 2013, Shanette has been able to combine all her experience and skills in a creative way to the benefit of the larger community.

In her words: “I love the fact that our shows make such a huge impact on our up and coming youth. Nothing communicates quite like live theatre and change comes easily as our future generation embrace the powerful messages brought to them by our wonderfully effective actors!” says Shanette.

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