TEN local theatre actors have been lined-up for the inaugural Zimbabwe Theatre Academy training programme established to offer professional training to players in the local theatre industry.
BY WINSTONE ANTONIO
The training, scheduled to begin in October, will be offered by the local chapter of the International Theatre Institute (ITI), while the organisation pursues plans to establish a professional actor training school.
ITI Zimbabwe chapter co-ordinator Lloyd Nyikadzino told NewsDay yesterday that the establishment of the training academy would help in professionalising the craft and discipline of theatre practice in the country, where many actors lack professional training.
“The primary focus of the theatre academy, through its one-year professional actor training project, is to provide a sustained platform for underprivileged and untrained youths to acquire practical and valuable theatre knowledge and techniques,” he said, adding that the students would be granted bursaries.
Nyikadzino said the academy will strengthen skills of the young theatre professionals, while creating new contemporary Zimbabwean theatre practitioners.
He said the 10 finalists were drawn from 19 selected potential actors, following auditions held between July 19 and 20 at Theatre in the Park.
“We had a call back on July 21 at AfriKera Theatre and Dance Hub and we wrapped up by selecting 10 students, three from Bulawayo and seven from Harare,” he said.
Nyikadzino said the academy was set to be officially launched on August 31 at Theatre in the Park with lessons set to commence on October 9, with the first batch of students graduating on June 21, 2018.
He said the long-term goal of the academy was to develop professionals to mentor and impart their skills to other aspiring theatre practitioners.
“Our aim, where possible, is to bridge the long-standing gap between the community and the university. Where this is not possible, it is to provide skills, expertise and a sense of direction to young artists (both practicing and aspiring) so that they might become professionals in the creative industries and to be able to create their own income generating projects after the training,” he said.