The government has secured and set aside Sh170m for the renovation of the Kenya National Theatre.
This was revealed by CS Ababu Namwamba during the official launch of the 8th edition of the Kenya International Theatre Festival (KITFest) on Tuesday, November 12.
Speaking at the national theatre, the Minister for Youth Affairs also announced the inauguration of Ngoma na Sarakasi alongside the ministry’s efforts towards the attainment of Pesa Mfukoni through the Talanta Hela Initiative.
KITFest got off to a flying start with the tunes of Mozart, the cool kids of Shibale and a classic by the evergreen John Sibi-Okumu opening the first night to a true international flavour of performances. The first of several guest performers from outside Kenya was Malawi’s Mwezi Arts with State of the Ape Address, which took to the stage on Wednesday evening.
Over the past several months, KITFest has been running the County Theatre Fiesta, a programme that has seen them tour and work with theatre practitioners from six counties across Kenya. The programme plays a huge role this year’s edition with winners from these excursions also set to showcase their performances over the next two weeks.
On opening night, and after speeches from the festival director, Benson Ngobia and Kenya Cultural Centre CEO, Michael Pundo, the curtain rolled open to a variety of performances. A piece first played from an empty sheet but which won the heart of an emperor. Played by pianist, Felix and violinist Ginger Neff, the piece composed by Mozart brought a fresh outlook to music on the stage.
This was followed by the energetic duo of Mark Wabwire and Emperor Shaker in a snippet of Big Boys of Shibale, which they will perform on closing night, November 12. There was a groovy touch, in line with the festival’s overall theme on Climate Action by the Embu Dance team that was part of the County Theatre Fiesta. Closing the curtains was Prevail Presents’ Meetings, a play written by John Sibi-Okumu and directed by Martin Kigondu.
On the side lines of the action on stage, installed at the Cheche Gallery is a unique collection of Audio plays produced by 16 voice artistes and spearheaded by Swiss Audio play director, Erik Altorfer.
A blend of incredible voice talent, music and sound effects, the audio pieces tell stories about various topics on climate action, ranging from ocean contamination to all kinds of pollution and emissions in the city.
With 35 performances from 14 countries, the Kenya International Theatre Festival will run through to November 12. This year’s theme is, ‘Theatre for a sustainable future: Telling Stories for Climate Action’.
Tickets are on sale now via the links https://kenyabuzz.com/events/event/kitfest/shows https://tikohub.co.ke/resources/KITFest.php?fbclid=PAAaYErh_Uu3fRsrOJzn1RTbWfQa7t9g4cbXwkUQ8ETTKlCzogGaefAfE7bB8 https://viutickets.viusasa.com/category/kit-festival?fbclid=PAAaYtj_0uFg6kYH5hhAVajsGSkfCxG9MlC2IE7dsTmKXc-8rXJDlvhaM_x7M
Tukutane KITFest 2023
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Article edited by @peterndoria