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‘Seven Ages’ to star at Madsoc

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After hosting Nursery Theatre from United Kingdom recently, which staged a play titled Ten Thousand Million Love Stories, Madsoc Theatre in Lilongwe is at it again; this time, it is hosting a play titled Seven Ages.

Actor Stanley Mambo— who last year starred in Shakespeare’s play The Tempest in the United Kingdom (UK) alongside musician Ben Mankhamba, Joshua Bhima and Robert Magasa — said all was set for the performance which would be had simultaneously with a workshop.

According to Mambo, Seven Ages is a play by veteran actress and director Gill Morel from UK.

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“The piece Seven Ages is based on a show compiled at The Royal Shakespeare Company’s open air venue, The Dell, at Stratford upon Avon, and essentially uses extracts from many of the plays and poems to explore Shakespeare’s view of life from birth to death, but with the Seven Ages speech from As You Like It forming a framework,” Mambo said.

He said, in Seven Ages, Gill takes people through the origins of each piece and mirrors Shakespeare’s life and his influence on literature and theatre.

Mambo said that Seven Ages will have one show only at Madsoc Theatre in Lilongwe on Sunday afternoon.

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“This production is being conducted in partnership with Mwezi Arts. Early bird tickets are K5,000 but they will be going at K8,000 at the door,” he said.

Using extracts from nearly 30 of Shakespeare’s plays, both serious and funny, Mambo said this original, entertaining and thought provoking play focuses on the seven ages of man, from infancy through childhood, adolescence, maturity to old age.

“Gill has had five plays and four children’s novels published in the US and Europe and has been involved in amateur drama for the last 30 years,” he said.

Mambo also said that Gill has directed and acted in pantomimes and light comedy to Shakespeare.

Her most recent shows as director have been Shakespeare’s The Tempest, Chekhov’s Three Sisters and two compilation shows for the Dell, with a new one planned for summer 2019.

Gill also recently acted in A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Petra Quince and was Mrs Jenkins in Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility.

“So, we call upon people to come and patronise this hilarious Shakespeare adaptation. Gill is also doing a workshop for actors, poets, writers and teachers in the morning ahead of the performance,” he said.

The workshop will be running under the theme Making Sense of Shakespeare and it will, among other things, cover the universality of Shakespeare, using improvisation and role play to help students understand the relevance and key themes of Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet.

The invitation indicates that entry fee for the workshop is free.

Mambo said lack of resources has compelled them to only hold one show in Lilongwe.

“We do not have enough resources to take the play to Blantyre and Mzuzu. But we have plans to be presenting our future shows, especially international ones, in Blantyre and other places,” he said.

Mambo said this is a solo actress in action and that Gill’s age and experience carries theatrical riches.

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