“Yoh yoh yoh! You know, many times I’ve thought it would be good to see a slow-mo replay of something that really mattered, something from my life… like the time my (comment removed – editor). This was it! It was like a dream, but real.”
Minnie Mazibuko, author of ‘Succulence in my Pocket: How to Grow Plants in your Pants.’
Sharing your own true stories and life experiences to create a feast of laughter and learning, Playback theatre features our partners the Bonfire Theatre Company. Comprised of award-winning performers and musicians, this is a completely improvised show, and is like nothing you’ve ever seen or experienced before (see www.bonfiretheatre.co.za).
Bonfire working with the Refilwe Community Project near Lanseria, Gauteng
Starting with one-word responses to easy questions and then sharing larger fragments of experience and memory, the show (which lasts an hour) climaxes with two or three longer stories from individuals in the audience, which are instantly ‘played back’ as live theatre, together with props, costumes and music. The performance has a strong physical theatre orientation, exploiting the theatrical language of gesture, puppetry, poetry, dance and interpretative narative, often resulting in a performance which is as breathtaking as it is surprising.
TakeAway’s role is to understand and develop your brief, and work together with our Bonfire colleagues to ensure that your theme is explored with verve and insight. We have collaborated on several successful interventions such as HIV and Aids work for Sasol in Mozambique, where real-life strategies for communicating around issues of trust and fidelity were played out with laughter and compassion. For the Sanlam Future Leaders Conference, the Playback form provided the perfect mix of musical celebration, community bonding and shared insight that the client needed to round off a dynamic learning process.
Cathartic, humane and richly rewarding, Playback theatre empowers you to reflect, digest and celebrate the challenges we face, and triumph over. For a special occasion – year-end functions, celebrations, conferences and auspicious events – Playback theatre is the perfect vehicle for communities in need of a catalyst, a special place, as the stories we share transform our understanding of what it is to be human.