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‘The Prison Escape’ comes to Blantyre

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A play which was written by Smith Likongwe titled The Prison Escape will be premiered on Sunday at The Block formerly Lucky Luciano in CI, Blantyre.

This is a grand theatrical collaboration involving Nanzikambe Arts, Mzuzu University Theatre Arts Group (Mutag), Lions Theatre and actress and filmmaker Flora Suya.

Actor Mphundu Mjumira, who is part of the cast, said on Wednesday that all was set for the production and that people should anticipate the best.

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“We are out to make a statement with this production that drama in English is not dead. Theatre is still alive and steps are being made to put it back to where it used to be,” Mjumira, who has starred in several of Nanzikambe’s productions, said.

Mjumira said the people also need to give support to theatre for it to grow by patronising the performances by different groups.

He said through the production, they also want to show that the country has great playwrights citing Likongwe, who is drama lecturer at University of Malawi – Chancellor College.

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Mjumira said from Blantyre, they also have plans to take the play to other places.

According to Misheck Mzumara, who has directed the production and is also a drama lecturer at Mzuzu University, the play has six characters but it will be played by four actors.

“The cast comprises myself, Mphundu Mjumira, Flora Suya and Thlupego Chisiza. All these are experienced actors and have been in the game for a long time so people need to come and watch the play at all cost,” Mzumara said.

According to the synopsis, two prisoners played by Mzumara and Chisiza escape from prison.

The escape is made easier because the prison warder on duty finds his job unexciting and not paying good enough.

Played by Mjumira, the warder works to try to make ends meet which is very difficult with his low earnings in modern day Malawi.

“He is not really interested in the job. At times he finds something to make his life exciting – women,” Mzumara explains.

He further adds that he falls for a certain woman, wife to a policeman (played by Suya).

In a twist of events, the lives of the prisoners, who escaped, the prison warder, the policeman and the wife are entangled in a web that is dangerous and disastrous.

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