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‘The Tempest’ could be staged in Malawi

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Actors Joshua Bhima and Robert Magasa, who starred in William Shakespeare’s play The Tempest in the United Kingdom have said that they were keeping their fingers crossed that funds should be realised for the play to be staged in the country.

Bhima and Magasa alongside Stanley Mambo and musician Ben Mankhamba, flew the country’s flag in UK as they took part in the production which also featured British actors.

“It was a great experience participating in this production. We enjoyed it and in all the performances we received overwhelming support. It also showed that Malawi has talent,” Bhima said.

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Magasa said it would be good for the play to be staged in Malawi for people to appreciate the production.

“At the moment, the Director of the play Kate Stafford and others are working very hard to raise funds so that the play should tour in Africa and that would also mean having performances in the country,” Magasa said.

Stafford said the UK tour, which started in April, was a success.

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“All the actors were great throughout the tour and the Malawian acts of Ben Mankhamba, Stanley Mambo, Joshua Bhima and Robert Magasa were very good,” Stafford said.

She said the collaboration between British and Malawian artists was exciting and creative.

Stafford directed the play which was designed by Hazel Albarn.

Stafford said bringing together artists from Africa and Europe, Bilimakhwe Arts used the best from both continents to entertain and move audiences.

Stafford, who has also directed several productions in the country with Nanzikambe Arts, described The Tempest as powerful, passionate and magical.

Some of the productions that Bilimakhwe has done featuring Malawian actors include And Crocodiles Are Hungry At Night and Romio Ndi Julieti.

The Tempest is a play by Shakespeare, believed to have been written in 1610–11, and thought by many critics to be the last play that Shakespeare wrote alone.

It is set on a remote island, where the sorcerer Prospero, rightful Duke of Milan, plots to restore his daughter Miranda to her rightful place using illusion and skilful manipulation.

This is a gripping comedy of magic, love and redemption. The sorcerer Prospero and his teenage daughter Miranda are exiled on a strange magical island.

The cast has Christopher Brand, who plays Prospero while Cassandra Hercules stars as Miranda with Magasa and Bhima playing Ariel.

The other actors are Reice Weathers (Ferdinand), Victoria Jeffrey ( Trinculo) and Benedict Martin ( Stephano).

The translations were made by renowned poet Nyamalikiti Nthiwatiwa.

Stafford maintained that if they can manage to get funds, they would bring the play to Malawi.

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