In the past year, young South Africans have become more and more vocal about the South Africa that they envisage and the South Africa that they want to live in. We have seen this demonstrated through #FeesMustFall movement in a more activist manner and in the day-to-day lives of young people through popular culture. While the youth are constantly absorbing new information and keeping up with the latest trends, they are individualists. They are heavily influenced by the mainstream media and are also affected by their own lived experience. Woza Albert!, which is shown at the Soweto Theatre annually, adds a rich layer, a content, that our young people can benefit from and grow to be more amazing than they imagined. The production provides an opportunity for critical thinking and analysis, skills that will assist young people in addressing the day-to-day challenges they face, allowing them to realise what they dare to imagine.
Woza Albert!, by Percy Mtwa, Mbongeni Ngema and Barney Simon, is a two-man play which captures the dehumanising nature of apartheid and the undying vibrancy of the human spirit. Starring Hamilton Dlamini alongside Bheki Mkhwane, Woza Albert! remains one of the most enjoyed examples of satirical anti-apartheid South African theatre. It demonstrates innovation and creativity during a seminal period of theatre in this country. An important time which all young people should be well versed in the texture and the feeling of the time, such that we never return there as a people.
The play portrays so much truth and clarifies a simple approach to the human condition, which therefore makes it relevant to South Africa. The two actors play the roles of various black South Africans – a vendor, barber, domestic worker, manual labourer and soldier – receiving the news that Christ (Morena) has arrived in South Africa, where a Calvinist white elite imposes apartheid.
Woza Albert! is a political satire that imagines the second coming of Christ during the apartheid era South Africa. It looks at a wide range of characters in South Africa at the beginning of the 1980s and attacks the pass laws that prevented Black people from moving freely at the time. The production uses the metaphor of Morena (Jesus) to show what would happen if he came back to South Africa during apartheid. Would he like what he saw? And if he saw the atrocities of the time, then why would he not do anything about them?
After each production, the cast return to answer questions from the audience, primarily school students, which adds immense value to the teaching and learning experience. Learners in the past have used this as an opportunity to understand the work more personally through the experience of the actors. The seasoned actors in this production have performed in Woza Albert! for so many years that it is not only in their blood but in their psyche.
This production is an excellent teaching and learning activity for schools and shows Tuesday to Friday at 15:00 as well as at 20:00 on Saturdays and at 15:00 on Sundays for the general public.
Tickets are R120 for the public and R80 for school groups.
Buy tickets today via www.sowetotheatre.com, 0861 670 670 or by contact Khosi for school bookings on 011 930 7461 or firstname.lastname@example.org