Rituals, a Zimbabwean play on the complex process of healing and reconciliation in communities following a period of intense violence in the context where conditions that caused the violence continue to exist, was performed successfully in South Africa.
After an impressive tour in Eastern Cape which ended with a performance in King William’s Town for the Steve Biko Foundation Centre on July 10, the play was performed in Johannesburg at the Council of Churches as part of a tour earmarked at reaching out to Zimbabweans abroad, diplomats, civic society, religious leaders, artists and journalists.
“These performances are coming at a time after politicians have represented or misrepresented their party interests, presented or mispresented the Zimbabwean situation, said Rooftop Promotions Sales and Marketing executive Tafadzwa Muzondo.
Muzondo said as artists they were coming in with a theatrical representation of the effects of the politically-motivated violence of 2008 and how communities had tried their own healing and reconciliation processes in an environment lacking political will and an almost invisible organ on national healing reconciliation and integration.
He said the play was written by renowned Zimbabwean playwright Stephen Chifunyise, directed by Daves Guzha and featuring, Mandla Moyo, Zenzo Nyathi, Joyce Mpofu, Silvanos Mudzvova, Chipo Bizure and Rutendo Chigudu with live music from Gibson Sarare and Joshua Mwase.
“It is an inspiring theatrical piece which has been well received by the Zimbabwean populace during its 100 performances tour in Zimbabwe but persecuted by some security agents in places like Cashel Valley, Bulawayo and Centenary,” he said.
Muzondo said in Manicaland the entire team got arrested and detained for two nights charged with criminal nuisance on January 5 2010 only to be acquitted by the Magistrates’ court on February 22 2011 after a marathon trial in which the State failed to sustain its case.
He said in Bulawayo the police had tried to stop its performances but were told not to interfere with the play after an exparte application by Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights and another case in Mashonaland Central.
“It has received critical acclaim from both theatre fans, artists, critics and enthusiasts in not only Zimbabwe but Kenya and Zambia when it started its international tour which will cover the UK in August,” said Muzondo.