By Sam Banda Jnr:
A collaborative play titled Built on the Sand by Lions Theatre, Pamthunzi Arts and Ujeni Arts premiered on Valentine’s Day at Blantyre Cultural Centre (BCC) and pulled an attractive audience.
Created by actor Mphundu Mjumira and written by Thlupego Chisiza, son to theatre maestro Du Chisiza Jr, the play discusses the issue of change.
The play goes deeper to discuss the country’s situation looking back to the time it got independence to the present and whether it has been a better place to live in.
Delving into a story of a couple, the play’s climax is when it looks at presidents who have ruled the country since independence, their strengths and weaknesses.
Having undergone serious rehearsals for close to six weeks, the actors produced the best on the day, keeping the audience attentive up to the end.
Apart from the message which is rich and relevant for the country ahead of the May 21 2019 elections, the play, which was staged at Lilongwe Technical College on Friday and then Mzuzu University, is coloured with drama, music and poetry.
Poetry in the play was created by Yankho Seunda with the elements of dance breathed in by contemporary dancers Robert Magasa and Joshua Bhima.
There was also an element of seriousness in terms of lighting.
The team also scored points on costume.
However, there are some scenes which are long and need to be trimmed.
Actress Dipolathu Katimba, who stars in the play, said the premiere of Built in the Sand is the beginning of more productions to come from them.
“Through this play, we wanted to make a statement that drama in English is not dead. Drama is still alive and we have shown that tonight. The country has a lot of talented actors and actresses and, to come out with a good piece, we thought of working together,” said Katimba, who also stars in Spouses and Workmates that airs on Times Television.
Thlupego said the play focuses on change.
“We are now talking about 54 years of independence but the country is still poor. We are going to polls in May, when we are looking at bringing change, but, as a nation, change needs to start in our homes, workplaces, churches, schools and families,” he said.
Actor and creator of Choices which airs on Malawi Broadcasting Corporation Television, Ashukile Mwakisulu, also said he was impressed with the production.
“I watched their rehearsals but I did not know it would come out better like this. A very professional production with a mature message,” Mwakisulu said.
Other actors starring in the play are Blessings Suya, Mjumira, Magasa, Tendai Scanda and Deborah Tandani.
A vibrant writer who gives a great insight on hot topics and issues