Intwasa Arts Festival koBulawayo, generally known as Intwasa, is a multi-disciplinary arts festival that brings together theatre, dance, music, film, fashion, literary arts and visual arts. Intwasa is aimed at celebrating artistic talent present in this region of Africa and globally. This year the festival kicks off on the 18th and ends on the 22nd of September 2012. An exhilarating programme will be headlined by the Spring Jazz Show featuring Dudu Manhenga, Alexio Kawara and The Cool Crooners.
The festival kicks off with, “Lion and The Jewel”, a high schools’ set book drama which will play twice at the Bulawayo Theatre. The first showing will be in the morning between 10 am and 12 noon and the next at 2pm, This show is in keeping with Intwasa Arts Festival’s goal of ‘catching them young’ by taking art to the schools and embracing the idea that arts and culture are now part of the schools’ curriculum. Later on in the day, still in the spirit of teaching, Intwasa will host two workshops: one in Film and the other in Social Media and its use in the arts industry. Both these workshops will be conducted by top arts personnel and will be attended by both professionals and semi-professionals.
The first day ends with a scintillating performance by the star-studded, “Stitsha”, featuring Nomathamsanqa Mkhwananzi from Iyasa and seasoned actors Zenzo Nyathi and Memory Kumbota. The play is directed by Sihlangu Dlodlo, one of Bulawayo’s prominent playwrights and producers who has resuscitated Cont Mhlanga and Amakhosi Theatre’s best-known and ground-breaking play of the same name. According to Dlodlo, who is actually producing the play for the second time, “Stitsha” is a Zimbabwean stage classic. The first time Sihlangu Dlodlo directed this play was when he was still working with Amakhosi’s, “ Children’s Programme” in the early 90s.
“Stitsha” has been produced for both stage and television before: Joyce Mpofu played the lead in the original stage version while the late Beater Mangethe played Thuli in the television version. In the new version, Nomathamsanqa Mkhwananzi is playing Thuli, the lead character. Nomathamsanqa recently returned from a European tour with, “Mother Afrika”, one of the best performing ensembles to come out of Africa.
“Stitsha” is one show not to be missed and for us at Intwasa a great beginning to a fantastic five days ahead.