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People’s Theatre welcomes youngsters back with favourite play, ’Beneath African Skies’

Yamikani Mahaka-Phiri and Nono Mkhonto star in ’Beneath African Skies’. Picture: Roy McGrath

Yamikani Mahaka-Phiri and Nono Mkhonto star in ’Beneath African Skies’. Picture: Roy McGrath

Published Mar 11, 2022

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The People’s Theatre is excited to welcome young audiences back with an inspiring and all time favourite children’s play “Beneath African Skies”.

Peoples Theatre is more determined to bring the very best in theatre for children after shutting down for two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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In this production, Peoples Theatre brings an ensemble of great African stories that are particularly appealing to children.

Directors Jill Girard and Keith Smith have carefully craft this production to entertain and educate young minds into a greater understanding of the wonderful stories and the rich heritage that exists in South Africa.

“We have so missed the creative experience and the interaction with other creatives, actors , designers and musicians and choreographers.

“Basically we so missed the entire creative experience and then the joy of seeing what you have created realised on stage and the appreciation from your audience,” says Girard.

“There is no better sound than the one of children laughing in a theatre, being swept up in the magic of live theatre! No television screen can replace that,” she adds.

“To set the scene is an African landscape that transforms itself as the wonders of the land becomes the backdrop to the myths and legends acted out by a group of talented professional actors.”

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The cast of ’Beneath African Skies’. Picture: Roy McGrath

The beautifully hand-crafted masks and puppets allow the actors to transform into the many different animals that inhabit the land. There is also a soundtrack of extraordinary effects which underscores all the action and interaction of this moving piece of children’s theatre.

“We wanted to produce a show that was relevant to today's children who are living in Africa.

“We also wanted to tell stories that are exciting, interesting and fun and adapt well to interaction involving our young audience in driving the show forward and a show which celebrates the reopening of this very special theatre.

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“Every story and there are nine, has a different theme. There are themes of courage that is within you, problem solving through your own initiative.

“The rabbit or hare feature very strongly throughout many of the stories which are found throughout Africa, which is why many of our stories feature the wily rabbit who is able to outwit much stronger bigger animals. The show is educational but totally entertaining.”

“Beneath African Skies” is currently being performed at the Joburg Theatre. Tickets are available at Webtickets from R100.

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