2022 marks 60 years of iconic storytelling in the Joburg Theatre. This significant custodian of South African performance arts will be celebrated with a colourful artistic program that reflects South African arts in its full splendour as well as its incredibly talented storytellers across various art disciplines.
Part of this exciting artistic program of the diamond jubilee celebrations, Joburg Theatre has programmed a series of productions including Kill Move Paradise, directed by award-winning director, Lesedi Job and co-produced by 2nd Round Productions.
Award-winning director, Lesedi Job.
Inspired by the ever-growing list of slain black men and women worldwide, Kill Move Paradise illustrates the potential for collective transformation and radical acts of joy. Four black men find themselves stuck in a waiting room for the after-life as they attempt to make sense of their new paradise. Isa, Daz, Grif, and Tiny are forced to confront the reality of their past, and how they arrived in this unearthly place. While balancing the reality of their past and the uncertainty of their future, their souls try to find peace from senseless action and hope in the life they left behind.
Drawing inspiration from the Black Lives Matter movement, the story will be told from a South African interpretation and perspective through the masterful director’s lens of Lesedi Job.
Job says this of her observance of the senseless killings of black lives;
“During the 2020 lockdown I remember observing the global outrage after George Floyd was murdered and wondered if a year later we would still be as affected or would we have moved on? I thought a lot of about George Floyd’s family; the image of his daughter sitting on her uncle’s shoulders saying “Daddy changed the world” that went viral, her mother’s words…“He will never see her grow up, graduate, he will never walk her down the aisle,”
The multi-faceted South African Director and actress, Lesedi Job, has secured the rights for Kill Move Paradise and becomes the first and only African director to lend her artistic prowess to the play. Job’s previous theatre work include The Dead Tinder Society starring Mpho Osei-Tutu, Mike Van Graan’s When Swallows Cry where she directed the incomparable Warren Masemola and a stand-out moment in Job’s career was when she directed the legendary Dr. John Kani and Robert Whitehead in Congo: The Trial Of King Leopold and many other notable theatre productions. This Mbokodo Award recipient says this of why she decided on Kill Move Paradise as her latest theatre offering;
“I just felt that posting a black image on Instagram was not enough. I may not have the power to change the world but I am a storyteller – I have a gift, I have a voice and I had to find a story to tell, to remind us all that Black Lives Matter!”.
Appropriately showing during Black History Month, Kill Move Paradise, boasts a talented cast that is a mix of seasoned theatre and celebrated television talent, Hungani Ndlovu, Batsile Ramasodi, Oarabile Ditsele and Zolani Shangase form part of the all-male ensemble that has been carefully selected by Job, who was interested in finding actors who are multi-faceted in their performance abilities and offerings. Actor, comedian and musician, Sne Dladla forms part of Lesedi Job’s creative team as musical director and sound designer, whilst theatre creative producer and musical theatre performer extraordinaire Lebo Toko will be choreographer for the work. Award winning lighting designer, Mandla Mtshali will be lending his striking design eye and talent to the production as lighting and set designer! Another notable collaborator for the work is prolific theatre and television director/producer and creative producer, Clive Mathibe of 2nd Round Productions, who will be co-producing the work alongside the vibrant producing team at The Joburg Theatre.
Mathibe says; “As 2nd Round Productions we are constantly interested in telling stories that not only reflect our society but those that progress our consciousness as a people and humanity. We are thrilled to be collaborating with The Joburg Theatre on this significant work in a year that is historic for this iconic cultural institution!”
The Joburg Theatre is equally thrilled to be presenting this work and being a part of a global conversation through Kill Move Paradise, which will be presented during Black History Month in 2022.
“The past two years have been like no other. Coronavirus has affected our lives in untold ways including keeping up with patrons and continuing telling stories. We’ve put together a series of entertainment to celebrate 60 years of telling stories on our stages. This production fits well as its time to celebrate and be part of an unmissable experience that offers a unique way of narrating stories throughout the Diamond Jubilee celebration ” – Lindiwe Lekasapa, Joburg Theatre Producer.
Kill Move Paradise runs at the Lesedi Theatre at Joburg Theatre from 11 February – 27 February 2022.