Solomonic Peacocks return to Zambia’s April International Theatre Festival, thanks to their remarkable debut last year.
The Peacocks of Blantyre, Malawi’s commercial city, who staged the Hot Undercurrent during their first appearance at the Lusaka Playhouse last April, go back to the Zambia capital with A Seal of Confession for the season running from April 24 to 28.
“This is a great development for Malawian theatre. Unlike last year when we were invited as representatives of the country, this year interested groups had to apply. This shows that the organisers, Yezi Arts, were satisfied with our performance and they appreciate our participation,” said Solomonic Peacocks artistic director McArthur Matukuta.
Featuring Zambian TV presenter turned actor Precious Kawinga, A Seal of Confessions puts on trial the veil of secrecy that enshrouds confession in the Catholic Church as a priest wrestles with a dilemma to safeguard a confessed killer of the president’s daughter or save his brother from police hands in a case of mistaken identity.
According to Matukuta, the inclusion of Kawinga in their theatrical export is a living testimony of the networking and collaboration opportunities attained from last year’s trip.
Apart from using the same stage, theatre practitioners from Zambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe and Botswana have a rare chance to share their experiences and expand their reach as they go through interactive trainings and share bus seats as well as rooms.
According to a press statement from festival director Abdon Yezi, the upcoming showcase will bring together seven groups, including locals Napsa Theatre, Chingola Arts Society, Mufulira Arts Society and debutants Mwansabombwe Cultural and Drama Arts Group.
Apart from Solomonic Peacocks, international participants include Zimbabwe’s regulars Edzai Isu and Botswana’s newcomers Ghetto Waves.
“The competition for this year’s participation was very high and we are glad the four local groups proved themselves,” reads the statement.
It adds: “Already, Edzai Isu are warning us that their new play entitled Washington Junction is a must-see. Similarly, Solomonic Peacock return to Zambia with A Seal of Confession which features Precious Kawinga of the MUVItv Ready for Marriage fame.
The Botswana group presents The Debt which re-examines topical issues surrounding African countries overwhelmed by external borrowing.