THE cast of Fela and the Kalakuta Queens, which opens on March 26 and continues until April 7 at the State Theatre.
Pretoria - The spirit of late legendary Nigerian musician Fela Kuti will be resurrected when the musical Fela and the Kalakuta Queens, which explores his life, graces the SA State Theatre.

The musical explores Kuti’s life as a defiant social activist and a flamboyant maestro. It opens on March 26 and continues until April 7.

It tells of his marriage to his 27 wives, also known as The Queens, in a single ceremony in 1978.

They left their homes to follow him, believing in his vision of building a better community through arts and music.

The Queens, who also form part of his band, give a unique insight into the negotiation of gender and power relations at the Kalakuta Republic, while also showcasing their unique fashion, dance and African identity in the musical.

The musical, which premiered in Lagos two years ago will make the State Theatre its home until next month.

The musical first opened at Lago’s Terra Kulture Arts and Culture Centre in December 2017 and is directed by Bolanle Austen Peters.

Kuti, a multi-instrumentalist and composer, died in 1997 at the age of 58.

Aubrey Sekhabi, artistic director at the theatre, said: “We have a thriving community representing the diaspora in Pretoria and believe that this will bring them out for theatrical entertainment.”

He said the message in the music remained relevant even in the modern time. “While entertaining and spectacular, the story of Fela Kuti and the Kalakuta Queens is a timeless critique of post-independence Africa. It has a strong commentary about greed, corruption, abuse of power, underdevelopment and leaders’ relationships with their former colonial masters. The message in the music was as relevant during Fela’s time as it is today.”

Pretoria News