"Politics, Africa, and Performance"- "Mo Faya!" Kenyan Musical Theater Performance"Politics, Africa, and Performance"- "Mo Faya!" Kenyan Musical Theater Performancehttp://www.haverford.edu/calendar/details/113962Ryan Gym2009-10-21T19:30:002009-10-21T21:30:00
October 21, 7:30PM–9:30PM
The Kenyan musical theater performance Mo Faya! involves music, drama, dance, and comedy. Featuring musicians and performers from Nairobi, Kenya, the show brings the audience to the city’s Kwa Maji slums where local radio DJ Lwanda’s leadership and vision over the airwaves have become the lifeblood of the community—until he is seduced away as part of a ploy to mow over the Kwa Maji slums in order to rebuild on the land. Addressing themes of social and human rights as well as visual and performance culture, Mo Faya! also foregrounds environmental issues’ crucial role in contemporary politics of poverty and power.
Eric Wainaina (Book/Lyrics/Music)is a leading singer, songwriter and performer from Nairobi Kenya. His music, a blend of modern and traditional Kenyan sounds, speaks on issues of social justice. His accolades are numerous and include several Pan African awards. Recently the Guardian Newspaper in the United Kingdom called him a living national icon. In 2002 the African Almanac listed him as one of the 100 most influential Africans after he took on rampant corruption prevalent in the government of the day. He is an ambassador for several local and international organizations including the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. He was recently awarded an Escopetarra- a guitar made out of a decommissioned AK-47 assault rifle. Other recipients of that award include Koffi Annan, Bob Geldof and the Colombian superstar, Juanes. Eric’s interest in musical theatre began in primary school where he participated in several Gilbert & Sullivan and Rogers and Hammerstein musicals. He took an interest in writing for musical theatre while at the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. In the summer of 2008 he was an Artist in Residence at the Sundance Institute Theatre Lab. He graduated from Berklee in 2002. He lives in Nairobi with his wife, Sheba, and child, Seben.
1 hour 55 minutes without intermission. Performed in English and Swahili. More information >
"Politics, Africa, and Performance" brings together writers, scholars, performers, and activists in a two-day discussion focusing on the ways in which the visual and performing arts provide crucial links between lived experience and political power. While Africa continues to be seen as underdeveloped, it is often at the forefront of new political movements. For scholars in Anthropology, History, and a range of other fields seeking to make sense of violence and change, dialogues with artists provide keys to understanding the seeming contradictions of populist struggle in today's global world.
Organized by Professor Jesse Weaver Shipley (Anthropology, African & Africana Studies).
Supported by the John B. Hurford ’60 Humanities Center’s Mellon Arts Residency Planning Grant Initiative, the Department of Anthropology, the African & Africana Studies Programs of Haverford and Bryn Mawr Colleges, and the Office of Distinguished Visitors.
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