Tshepang to stage at Market

Patience Bambalele

Patience Bambalele

Tshepang, The Third Testament by Lara Foot-Newton, the powerful play that has toured the world, is opening at the Market Theatre for a very brief season.

This irredeemable grim show opens on Friday and runs until Sunday only at night. With Mncedisi Shabangu as Simon, the sculptor and narrator, and Nonceba Didi as the symbol of silence, the play is a haunting and uplifting masterpiece of redemption.

The story is based in part on the story of a nine-month-old baby who was raped - the consequences of which are still resounding today. The play is the result of extensive research.

Tshepang takes African storytelling and mixes it with complex psychological and personal issues. It draws on the experiences of South Africans, dealing with issues like innocence and accusations in a brilliant, simplistic and symbolic way.

While the topic may be brutal, the way it is handled is sensitive, even poetic.

As usual, Foot-Newtown has showed an outstanding creativity in the show. Unlike many playwrights, Foot-Newtown is one of the best conceptualist.

Tshepang combines striking visual imagery with an African sense of magic realism. The audience is transported to a world where sadness and despair live next to love, humour and hope.

Tshepang is both intimate and urgent, approaching a difficult subject in a uniquely poetic manner.

After a season at the Market Theatre, Tshepang will then Canada.