Experience Zim’s Pinocchio @ Reps

The Sunday Mail

Takudzwa Chihambakwe

IT is that time again when all roads lead to Reps Theatre for the annual pantomime.

This year, the famous theatre presents Zimbabwe’s version of the famous, “Pinocchio”, which started showing yesterday December 5, and will run till December 22.

“The Pinocchio version we are doing is based on the original story by Carlo Collodi and not the Disney story,” said director and writer of the play, Mario Ciampi.

“Because it is a pantomime, we had to create some characters to get the traditional feel of the pantomime, which encompasses the fairy, as well as the good and bad guys. All the characters have been swapped around as well just to add to the humour that come with a pantomime,” he shared.

He added that the addition of new characters meant a change of the storyline. Ciampi highlighted that there will be some instances when the play will refer to the Disney version.

He said: “Another rendition to look out for during the play will be Elvis Presley’s track ‘Wooden Herat’. We partnered with local musicians and a Shona teacher to translate the original German lyrics of the track to Shona and I must say it is sounding very nice. The song will be sung as the play progresses – this was all done to give this Pinocchio a Zimbabwean feel.”

The production is made up of a cast and crew of 42 people who have been in rehearsal for some weeks now. Since its publication in 1881, Pinocchio has become the world’s most translated non-religious book, with numerous stage and screen versions of all languages being produced. The most famous of these is without doubt the 1940 cartoon adaptation by Walt Disney.