The Plays of Miracle & Wonder: Bewitching Visions and Primal High-jinx from the South African Stage

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Juta and Company Ltd, 2003 - Drama - 200 pages
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From a truly groundbreaking voice in African theater, these three plays have disturbed and transported audiences in South Africa and abroad with their depictions of some uncomfortable episodes in South African history. From witch hunts in Kokstad and the saga of King Hintsa’s skull to the prophecies of Nongqawuse and the ensuing cattle-killing crisis, these plays touch on shared neuroses and fears, blending the tragic and transcendent with the farcical. With accompanying essays and working notes, the playwright gives background and insight into each of the productions and outlines his own artistic development and vision. This richly designed book re-creates something of the funky energy, haunting magic, and colorful imagery of the plays themselves.

 

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Contents

foreword by John Matshikiza
6
stories of our times
9
looking for direction
12
performing so the spirit can dance
19
the horror the horror
30
notes from the wilderness
36
lPl ZOMBl? the play
39
zombies on safari
77
crits
146
revelations
149
there is a thing that speaks in my country
152
Nongqawuse
159
the Dead
160
the Juju
163
the Life Force
164
THE PROPHET the play
167

history of ZOMBlE lPl ZOMBl?
85
crits
88
mumbo jumbo
91
an intoxicating whiff of the pointedly irratio 105 iMUMBO JUMBO the play
93
history of iMUMBO JUMBO
144
history of THE PROPHET
194
crits
196
the way forward
198
photographers and artists
200
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About the author (2003)

Brett Bailey is the founder of Third World Bunfight?a nonprofit South African theater company focused on forging a truly African theater with untrained black performers from local townships and rural areas. He has an MA from Das Arts School for the Advanced Study of Drama in Amsterdam, and in 2001 he won the Standard Bank Young Artist of the Year for drama.

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