|Article by Ogova Ondego
Published April 9, 2008
A lot of time is wasted by people doing nothing but hoping someone or something will come or happen. This phenomenon has inspired a South African writer to craft a play that is set to première at the 2008 National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, South Africa, on June 26, 2008.OGOVA ONDEGO reports.
Lots of living, says writer Michael Wentworth, is wasted Waiting: Waiting in fear and cowardice and queues and lines; waiting for things to improve and happiness to find me,waiting for the pain to go away and the old wounds to heal; waiting for someone who would come and make it all worthwhile.
This is the preview of an 80-minute play Written by Wentworth and directed by Itumeleng Motsikoe that could be set anywhere in the world as it tackles a universal theme: a man’s journey toward self discovery and his confrontation with the meaning and value of his life.
Produced by the National Arts Festival, the South African State Theatre and “69 Productions”, director Motsikoe, according to the Press Statement, “creates a distinctive theatrical tour de force, with live musical accompaniment by the iconoclastic, multi-instrumentalist Hilton Schilder and starring Phillip Tindisa as Jimmy-James.”
According to Wentworth, “Waiting” redefines the boundaries of contemporary South African theatre where one actor plays a total of nine different characters of both sexes and of various cultural and linguistic backgrounds that have impacted on the life and personal development of the protagonist, “Jimmy James Goeieboom.”
Of the production, Wentworth says, “The visual and theatrical journey is juxtaposed by the soundscapes created by the inimitable multi-instrumentalist, Hilton Schilder who makes his much anticipated return to theatre with this production.”
“Waiting” is a play that tells the story of what happens in the mind of a young man who is forced to confront the person he thought he was and the man he has become through both circumstance and choice.
The story charts the journey of his mother’s desire to leave behind her rural upbringing and her arrival in the city where she meets his father with whom she falls in love, but they are from different sides of the racial spectrum and as a result he is killed in an act of ignorant malice: and so Jimmy’s life is marked by strife and loss before he is even born.
At a young age, Jimmy is removed from his mother and placed in a foster home from which he runs away and after spending time on the streets and being introduced to crime in order to survive, he finds some solace in a Christian orphanage where he begins his schooling and is introduced to the Bible. However, this sanctuary is stripped from him when he defends himself against a bully and is sentenced to six years in prison for assault.
After his release from prison and after various attempts, Jimmy finally finds his niche inthe job market and settles down with a girlfriend who falls pregnant, but on the day that his son is born, his life is changed forever.
While Wilhelm Disbergen designs the set, Peter Mokgosi takes care of the lighting of “Waiting”, that will be performed at the Victoria Theatre on June 26 and 27 at 2:00 pm and 7:00 pm and on June 28 at 11:00 am and 3.00 pm. Ticket booking opens on May 5, 2008.