Theatre players honour Chifunyise

BY TAFADZWA KACHIKO

CHIPAWO Trust’s New Horizon Theatre Company and Theatre in the Park will stage a series of plays this month, under the theme: A Time with Uncle Steve, in honour of the late legendary playwright Stephen Chifunyise.

The first play, Vicious, written and directed for UNFPA by Chifunyise will be staged on Friday and Saturday.

The play touches on various issues affecting most Zimbabwean communities — including poverty and HIV from a fresh perspective.

Chipawo manager Chipo Basopo, who features in the play, told NewsDay Life & Style that the plays were a way of honouring Chifunyise and keeping his legacy alive.

“This is to honour and keep Uncle Steve’s legacy alive. Every month Chipawo and Theatre in the Park will present at least one play from him. Vicious is a tragic and classic portrayal of the prevailing poverty where even middle-class families are drawn into poverty by the needs and suffering of their relatives who come to live with them in town or remain in the countryside where many are dying of Aids,” she said.

The cast includes Tafadzwa Munjoma, Kidman Basopo, Kundai Chipagara, Sabinah Rwatizha, Nigel Chindngungwe and Robert Chiyama.

Chifunyise’s longtime friend Robert McLaren, a renowned theatre practitioner, described Vicious as the former’s greatest play.

“Perhaps his greatest masterpiece is Vicious. In most of his plays he treated his topics not only with a deep understanding of the issues, but also a wonderful sense of humour. His themes are all essentially Zimbabwean, exploring Zimbabwe’s culture, its modern mores and topical burning issues, including the political,” he said.

Chifunyise founded Chipawo and remained its chairman until his death in August this year.

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