Play highlights women’s plight

Members of Project Playground who will perform at the Roman Catholic Church next week.

Creative minds of youth from Gugulethu and Nyanga have joined forces to bring an explosive new production titled Women on the Cross to the stage.

The play, conceived by Amandla Nqokoto, explores the many hardships that women and girls face in their lives, such as physical and emotional abuse.

The show aims to raise awareness and encourage women to speak out about issues they face.

“The production gives a voice to those who do not or cannot speak,” explained Mr Nqokoto.

The play has been reinterpreted into a dance and movement piece by choreographer Wendy Thoane, in collaboration with dancers from her group, Gijima Creative Arts and Empowerment. It is performed by participants from Project Playground, where Mr Nqokoto and Ms Thoane teach music and dance to children aged 8 to 17.

Project Playground is an organisation that creates a meaningful spare time for about 750 children and youth in the townships of Langa, Gugulethu and Samora Machel. Soccer, netball, art, drama, music, dance and a disability programme are among their activities that aim to inspire individuals who in turn influence their peers.

The organisation was founded in 2010 by two Swedish women based on the conviction that adults have a duty to protect the universal rights of children. It is politically and religiously independent and has the UN’s Convention on the Rights of the Child as its starting-point.

“We’ve been working hard with these kids since January this year,” says dance facilitator Mr Thoane. “We feel that we’ve been building up to this climax. Women on the Cross is not an easy production. But we are amazed by how the kids engage themselves with the emotions and the pain.”

Women on the Cross will be showcasing at Project Playground, in NY 5 at the Roman Catholic Church, from Monday November 28 until Wednesday November 30. Tickets cost R20 and can be bought from Project Playground during office hours or at the door.

For more information you can call Mr Nqokoto on 072 443 3415 or 021 633 0263.