KwaSha Theatre Company is embarking on a school tour for their latest production “The Kids of Amandla Street,” from August 18 to September 3.
Written by Lereko Mfono and directed by Sibahle Mangena “The Kids of Amandla Street” explores themes of friendship, xenophobia, and identity.
The play follows the story of four youngsters Obi, Jimmy, Palesa and Lillian, living in Amandla Street in the inner-city Joburg, as they navigate their way through an an environment that offers comfort and joy, but also quickly becomes a place full of prejudice, racism and fear.
Within the complexity of the street, they think of as home, the kids who live there seek to lead whole-hearted lives and dream big dreams.
They are put in a situation where they must come up with their own solutions and decide on their personal values and actions, even when these are at odds with the authority figures in their lives.
“I am so moved to hear the talented KwaSha team will be staging the work, especially in this current climate we’re in,” said Mfono.
“I started developing the play in 2015 when there were xenophobic attacks that broke out in Durban and parts of Johannesburg, and in many ways, it’s so disheartening to see that some seven years later we are still dealing with the same issue in this country.
“My hope is that the play will resonate with young audiences in such a way that they would be convinced to break the cycle of hatred wherever they are”.
“The Kids of Amandla Street’ was originally developed through ASSITEJ SA’s African Youth Theatre and Dance Festival programme, in association with New Visions New Voices at the John F. Kennedy Centre, the University of Maryland, Artscape Theatre and Soweto Theatre.
Now in its fifth year, KwaSha, a theatre company run collaboratively by Windybrow Arts Centre and the Market Theatre Laboratory, are coming to this production fresh from the National Arts Festival, in Makhanda where they presented Franz Fanon’s “The Drowning Eye” on the curated programme.
This diversity of programming reflects the extraordinary range of experiences that KwaSha members are able to participate in during their year in the company, to give them work experience which helps launch their professional careers.
Mfono has written extensively for young audiences and is passionate about inspiring young Africans to dream confidently and expansively.
For further information or to request a performance of “The Kids of Amandla Street” at your school, contact Zintle at [email protected] or call 082 880 8691.