THEATRE: The Golden Calabash …
I attended The Golden Calabash play at the National Theatre on December 23rd. It continued to run for three more days until the 26th. This play, written and directed by John Ssegawa, is a political satire presented in a funny and thought-provoking manner, portraying the absurdities that occur in politics, set in a place called Obuhehe.
The play commenced with a portrayal of a significant event - welcoming a new bride for Chief Mukwawa. However, things became chaotic when the old bride refused to leave the house, contrary to the tradition that occurred every five years. At some point, the chief attempted to change the rules, norms, and traditions of Obuhehe to prolong his rule despite his weakened and aged state, ultimately leading to his demise. This triggered chaos, betrayals, and even deaths. The story delved into themes such as power struggles, morality, and the repercussions of deviating from traditions.
The actors delivered an outstanding performance, particularly Henry Mayanja as Chief Mulambasi (who was the second in command chief of Obuhehe), and John Ssegawa who acted as Ssasi Ya Ukhali (the chief security officer). They brought their characters to life, showcasing the absurdity of the political world humorously. The entire cast, including Arinaitwe Ramathan as Gamoto, Barabra Kasamba as Lindiwe, Obed Lubega Kikongoma, Bruno Sserunkuma as Malibongwe, Shamim Mayanja as Mangalira, Ivan Ssenjovu as Mbweno, Matovu Ntanda as Zindaba, Robert Kasule as Mutwa, Nodryn Evanci and others, contributed to the success of the play.
The Golden Calabash employed humor to address serious societal issues, evoking laughter while prompting contemplation about political problems. The play highlighted the importance of adhering to traditions and depicted the consequences when those in power deviate from what is right.