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Fes Bhuku

Posted by on December 11, 2011

I spent Monday and Tuesday working on the GIS lectures which I will give on Dec 13 and 14, right before I head home. There’s nothing else to note about Monday since I worked on the talks in the evening as well, but on Tuesday after work I went to another play at “Theater in the Park” with Salome.

This play was entitled “Fes Bhuku” and is pronounced like “Facebook” and although it was about the social networking website, it was not a recreation of the successful movie of the same name. Since it was opening night for the play, it was free again but they were checking names at the door since this was an invite only event. Salome’s sister, Ruth, works for the company that was producing the play so our names were on the list. I felt like a celebrity.

Since they didn’t have tickets, they oversold the show and people had to sit on the floor (on cushions), make the stage even smaller. The room was packed and hot.

It was a one hour play, with 5 cast members. The lead character is a guy in rural Zimbabwe who runs a small restaurant with his brother but is obsessed with Facebook and making posts which are politically or socially controversial. When he hears some new news about Egypt he wants to post something but realizes that he has lost his internet password (which is written on a yellow card). He goes all around town looking for it, following the garbage truck and going to the dump yard. Meanwhile, his wife has stolen his yellow card to prevent him from getting into trouble with the government for the nature of his posts. She plots with his brother to break the posting habit. The brother is also having an affair with a married woman whose husband is very rich and powerful in the village. Much comedy ensues and the audience would have been rolling in the aisles if there were any.

The play was good, but a lot of it was in Shona so I missed out on many jokes and had a hard time establishing the relationships of the characters early on. I felt like I was two steps behind the whole time and didn’t get many of the jokes at all. That’s completely my fault for not speaking the language; obviously everyone else thought it was wonderful. It was entertaining and certainly better than going home and sitting alone although if I had known how much Shona there was I would have thought twice about going; still it was a great experience and I hope the play is successful.

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