Women's Month: Lerato Molemong, leading woman in theatre
Chief executive and producer of Mzansi Arts Development (MADE) Lerato Molemong has been in the arts and entertainment industry for two decades.
She's worked closely with the late Themi Veturas in producing "Mashu the Musical" which premiered at The Playhouse Company in 2015. The production went on to received 11 nominations and won four awards at the Durban Mercury Theatre Awards. She also has the MADE Institute which offers further education and training in music and dance instruction at the soon-to-be-opened School of the Arts which will be based at the Diakonia Centre in the heart of the city.
Are there any notable changes in the industry over the years?
I have been in the industry for 20 years. It’s sad to say that there are no notable changes. There are still challenges with rehearsal space and venues to stage productions. Those that are available are costly. Sourcing of funds to produce and stage theatre work is still a big challenge to date; never mind the support.
What are your thoughts on more woman joining the industry?
The theatre industry has always been predominantly male dominated and it still is. If there are more women joining the industry, it will give us more power to influence change.
What are some for the issues women face today?
Issue of double standards. As women, we are held to a much higher standard than our male counterparts. As women, we always have to prove ourselves. Our actions, creative choices and decisions are always being weighed and judged.
What is an issue that you've personally faced and how did you overcome it?
The issue of double standards. I have learnt to cope with it by focusing on my work and delivering the best
How important is it for women to uplift each other and stand with one another through struggles?
As women, it is important that we support each other, empower each other, complement one another and encourage each other. This will help in building confidence among each other as women. The more confident we are, the stronger we feel which will result in success.
What will you be doing on Women's Day?
Nothing specific. The chances are, I will be spending my day with family.