Theatre in the Park bounces back

HARARE - Theatre in the Park officially re-opened in the Harare Gardens on Tuesday night after four years on the sidelines.

Zimbabwe’s leading theatre organisation had not had a home since 2012 when they left the gazebo in the Zimbabwe International Book Fair (ZIBF) grounds after disagreements with the book fair authorities.

Until then, Rooftop Promotions had used the book fair venue for 17 years.

Several artistes who include Hope Masike, Tariro neGitare, Doc Vikela, Chirikure Chirikure, Cde Fatso performed at the opening event that was graced by Norway’s Ambassador to Zimbabwe Bard Hopland.

Rooftop Promotions founder and director Daves Guzha revealed on the night that the new venue’s first play would be Super Patriots and Morons, which was banned by the Censorship Board in 2003.

“Unable to perform (the play) in our own community, we took the production to the international stage, performing to wide acclaim in theatres across the region and the world. For the first time in 12 years, we are bringing the play home,” said Guzha.

He added that the play, which revolves around an ageing African dictator who does not want to give up power, is still very relevant 13 years later.

“Over the past decades, we have watched the degeneration of leadership in Zimbabwe. We have seen our political situation become a sad farce. Politicians seem more and more like mediocre actors playing to a crowd, forgetting their lines, squabbling over the best props or the brightest spotlight, stumbling over the disintegrating stage.

“The media is filled with stories about politicians appropriating land, resources, 15 billion dollars’ worth of diamond revenue — but what about appropriating our history, or our culture?”

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