UK based charity, Dramatic Need, has been showcasing a theatrical production of a set of monologues originally written by children in South African township Rammulotsi in the Free State. These theatrical productions have featured some of the leading actors and directors, such as last year's production featuring Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Kit Harington and Nicole Kidman, while the production itself was directed by Danny Boyle.
For the first time last Friday, the show was presented in South Africa, at the Market Theatre, featuring a great cast of South African actors and some of the children assisted by the charity.
Based on reviews, it seems that the stories presented in each production are not the same but each production seems to have a mix of sad and happy stories - although even some of the happiest have an element of sadness. For me, the story of the colourful shoes was by far the most powerful - a combination of hope, perseverance and the brutal reality of violence in South Africa; followed closely by the story of rape (in which the dance performance that accompanied the narration was as accomplished as the harrowing story narration).
Children's Monologues is a great showcase for South African theatre - it's a pity that these performances are only once off.