BULAWAYO – Nigerian playwright Wole Soyinka’s play The Lion and the Jewel was the star attraction of the just-ended Intwasa Arts Festival.
The internationally-acclaimed play by the 1986 Nobel Prize laureate drew full houses during the two slots allocated to it at Bulawayo Theatre.
Directed by Thabani Hillary Moyo, the play attracted an audience mainly composed of students from various schools from in and around Bulawayo.
The play was performed by the Centre for Talent Development, a vibrant young group of actors in Bulawayo whose acting kept the crowd alive despite the hot weather.
The hilarious satire juxtaposes modernisation against African culture and shows how the continent’s culture has been corrupted by foreign influences.
The play’s director, who is also an arts teacher at Evelyn Girls High School in Zimbabwe’s second biggest city, was delighted by the high turnout by students to witness the epic play.
“We were supposed to do one show initially but we ended up staging another one in response to the overwhelming demand,” an elated Moyo added.
Moyo said the main idea behind the play, which is part of the “A” level curriculum, was to help the students prepare for their examinations.
“We believe that plays should be performed on stage.
“When students see the characters on stage they will understand the plays better; they will recall when they finally write examinations,” he said.
This year’s edition of Intwasa Arts Festival Ko Bulawayo, which began on Tuesday last week and ended on Sunday, ran under the theme “Cultural Diversity the Common Heritage for Humanity.”