Sophia Chese Arts Correspondent
The play “My Right is My Weapon”, which is part of the ongoing Harare International Festival of the Arts will be staged at Reps Arts Theatre Upstairs beginning 6.30pm today. The play is a product of Assitej, an International Association of Theatre for young children that will see other plays from four different countries also taking part in this year’s edition of the festival. The other countries are Sweden, Mozambique, South Africa and Zambia and they all have plays that tackle issues that affect children.
In an interview with The Herald Entertainment, the writer of the play Lovejoy Mwawoneka said the play encourages people to work hard so that they become rich and refrain from visiting witchdoctors for wealth.
“We have seen that a number of children who have been abused were as a result of witch doctors, people visit these people and are told to have sexual intercourse with minor children so that their problems will be solved and the victims are children,
“In this play we are tackling those issues by encouraging people to work hard if they want to be rich,” he said.
He said they are also urging children to report any case of child abuse as early as possible so that they can get help.
The cast include the writer Mwawoneka, Spiwe Guwera, Rumbidzai Musarurwa, Monica Makombe and Sitshengisiwe Siziba. The play was directed by renowned actress Enisia Mashusha who has featured in a number of local films and theatre productions. Mashusha said she is looking forward to a good show.
“This is my first time to direct a big production and I am happy with the way the cast has worked on the play. It is an opportunity for new actors to showcase their potential while established actors add flavour to the play.
“I am happy with the play and I know it will go a long way,” she said.
Zimbabwe Association of Theatre for Children and Young People National Director Washington Masenda said they have decided to take the opportunity they have been given by Hifa an Assitej mini fest.
“We are going to use this platform to have our mini fest where four countries are going to take part and the one that is going to put up an outstanding performance will be rewarded accordingly,” he said.
He added that the plays are also meant to build capacity for women in the industry.
“We want to create a platform whereby women are given equal roles with their men counterparts so in this case men write the plays and women direct,
“These plays are set to tour many countries this year,” he said.
He said locally, they have decided to mix new faces in the acting industry with those who have been in the industry for some time.