Despite the most daunting odds thrown at them by the third wave of COVID-19 and tighter lockdown restrictions, Director Dr. Jerry Mofokeng wa Makhetha and his stellar cast, in partnership with the United States Mission to South Africa, are proud to present Lorraine Hansberry’s stage play, A Raisin in the Sun this Heritage Month.
With Keketso Semoko, Nat Ramabulana, Xolile Tshabalala and Gerben Kamper in leading roles, Hansberry’s masterpiece in hope, will premiere at the Soweto Theatre on 11 September 2021 and run until 17 September 2021 with a week of double matinee performances.
This will be followed by double matinee performances at the Kroonstad Civic Theatre opening on Heritage Day (24 September 2021) and run until 26 September 2021. All performances will follow strict COVID-19 protocols and are limited in audience numbers based on lockdown Level 3 regulations.
“We are able to stage A Raisin in the Sun with immense gratitude to the U.S. Mission to South Africa. Without their financial support we would not have been able to produce a play of this calibre and production value. We are also extremely grateful to the Executive Mayor Councillor Mpho Chakane of the Moqhaka Local Municipality who has welcomed us to Kroonstad with open arms and generous hospitality,” says award-winning director and producer Mofokeng wa Makhetha.
Originally set in the 1950s, A Raisin in the Sun tells the story of an African American family’s desire and aspirations to move beyond segregation and disenfranchisement. A father’s death and life insurance pay-out promises his wife and children an opportunity to rise above their current circumstances. Throughout the play there is ongoing tension between the themes of dreams and selfishness, underpinned by gender, class and race.
“This is a story of hope, at a time in history when we need it most. It is a story that gives people permission to dream again. Walter, in the play, may be
African American, but he is as much African as Steven Biko. When you watch the play and remove the places mentioned, it is very much an African play, an African story, an African Legacy. What happens when a Walter in the Free State in the democratic South Africa has a dream to have his own house, his own company? For his son to go to his school of choice and for his wife to wear pearls?” says Mofokeng wa Makhetha.
“This production is a gift to me, the cast and crew, and to every member of the audience that will experience it. What a rare opportunity to occupy a magical seat in the theatre in the time of COVID,” he concludes.
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