In recent years, productions have increasingly explored masculinity and the way in which art can work to change people’s perspectives about the role of males in society. This year’s Festival is no exception.
Being Adam, premiering this year, focuses on the psyche and life of married men. Scriptwriter Bongani Tshabalala said his play tackles issues such as men abusing women, men feeling inferior to women, and women disrespecting men by cheating on them. He feels the production will invoke social change by showing men that it is possible for them to change their perspectives of their roles.
“Men feel afraid to speak out about abusing women and their relationships in the home, and the show tries to change that,” Tshabalala said.
The show aims to change people’s attitudes to gender equality, he added.His Legacy, another premiere, is a two-man play about two brothers who fight over their father’s inheritance.
Writer, director and actor Barnatious Sepato said: “The situation becomes polygamous, which ends up hurting people and can destroy life.”
He said that the idea of pretending that men have to be strong needs to end so the reality that men are weak can be reflected in the show.
“It is only by consulting this male theme that change can be influenced,” Sepato remarks.
Our Father’s Sons, another South African premiere, also explores the theme of male identity in family life. After a mother dies, her sons and their father have to negotiate their roles. One son is gay, and, while his brother accepts his sexual orientation, his father is homophobic. Director Roy Wilkinson said the issue of homosexuality needed to be addressed so that people could lose their preconceived stereotypes.
The play tackles sexual identity which, Wilkinson said, “is a personal thing that does not make a difference to who or what that person is”.
Notify me of follow-up comments by email.
Notify me of new posts by email.
Watch more videos here
Copyright © 2015 Cue Online A Project of Rhodes University Digital Media Lab