TUT play: what it means to belong as an African


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The play VIV[id] by the Tshwane University of Technology’s Department of Drama and Film (Drama), examines what it means to belong as an African.

This innovative theatre piece is devised and directed by drama lecturer, Dr Janine Lewis, and created by the cast, with original text by former drama student, Thato Kȁmmerer. It explores what makes up self and influences one’s personality.

It will be presented as an immersive theatre installation, where the audience experiences the action by fully participating. They will be asked to identify themselves through engaging in name association and presentation of literal forms of identity documentation. The overall story appears dreamlike and is more of a riddle than a story.

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According to Dr Lewis, the title plays with the interpretation of three intertwined concepts: viv as in the Latin word for alive; id as in identity; and vivid as in intense, striking and vibrant.

“Life is looked at through the metaphor of a fish swimming in a fishbowl. As people, we are the fish continuously re-engaging with reality from within the spiral of existence,” adds Dr Lewis. “The bowl and water also play a part, as fish (people) need to navigate, swim and survive in waters. While the waters contain essential nutrients, they are rarely pure, clear and favourable. In fact, they are often toxic and murky, the cause of much confusion, unclear vision and stress. In this murky environment, people are expected to exercise leadership and control of themselves and immediate surroundings. It is also their job to contribute towards cleaning the tank,” she concludes.

Performances will take place at the Rostrum Theatre, Arts Campus, Arcadia Pretoria, from 27 to 31 March 2017. There is a show at 19:00 every day. Bookings at 012 382 6130, or enquiries at www.facebook.com/tutdrama.dept or lewisj@tut.ac.za

Tickets are R40 (adults), R20 (students and learners) and R15 (block bookings).


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