A musical celebrating various cultures and capturing the magic of African people and the raw beauty reinforcing social cohesion and African Renaissance. Written and directed by Bogosi Bolokwe. Very rich in African heritage! A celebration that will confront who we are, where we come from, and where we are going as Africans?
Umshado tells the story of a young man’s journey from his roots in the kraal of Moruleng to the Shantytown of Mamelodi ya Tshwane (Pretoria). The play opens during the ceremonial preparation for his entrance into manhood and it captures this initiation, rite of passage of a Tswana boy. The story continues from his initiation to love and marriage. Confronted by the traditional practice of lobola.
Umshado is a potpourri of African heritage music and dance that includes Zulu, Nguni, Xhosa, Tswana languages and African folk songs. “isiBhaca” dance rhymes to Sesotho “isRashiya” concertina music that contains raw poems of the Basotho. Closely linked to concertina music, is a complex repertoire of guitar styles that emerged from within the ranks of young migrants and domestics workers called “ukuvamba” which was anchored by “Boere” guitar techniques. Marabi, kwela and indunduma music are in abundance, the songs are accompanied by the origin of different dances like “Thula Ndivile” “isishameni” and “isikhuze” to name a few.
The choreographer, Bolokwe started his career in 1979 as an actor and traditional dancer. Went to dance school in Pretoria (Body Talk) to learn Modern Jazz dance under Andre Van Der Nest, carried on taking acting and technique lessons from Gibson Kente, produced ‘Kwela Bafana’ at Sun City Galaxy Show Bar and constructed Sibikwa Theatre in Benoni. His works amongst many include:
The South African State Theatre will be opening big, the musical on the 18th of November. Everyone is invited to the opening- The show caters across all ages. Theatre lovers can enjoy a preview of the show on the 17th. “It is through Umshado that no matter how different we are as Africans, we can unite, to fight the common problems we are facing as the whole nation- Bolokwe”
Umshado is produced by Bogosi Bolokwe Ratladi with a cast that includes Bonginkosi R Madondo, Mfundo Emmanuel Msibi and Sibusiso Meyiwa, among many others. Eddie Mathiba is the Musical composer and Director, Lennox Sibisi the Choreographer and Matshidiso Mokoka as Assistant Choreographer. The band includes Bonisile Lesley Dokolwana, Mfana Penuel Phangisa, Mzwakhe ‘Muzi’ Radebe and Sphiwe Mgemezulu.
Tickets can be obtained at Computicket. Prices are R40 on Tuesdays, R80 on Wednesday and Thursdays, and R100 for Friday and Saturday.
For more information, please visit www.statetheatre.co.za