Posts Tagged ‘Chester Missing’

loyiso

There’s probably going to be a lot of empty plinths in South Africa’s major centres soon – well, if this country’s self-styled landscape decolonisers get their way. The problem is: all those statues of Van Riebeeck will probably end up being replaced by statues of other particularly dour and/or problematic personages. So we want to propose something different: put up some statues of popular artists. But which ones would be most suitable? Here are a few proposals.

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Conrad Koch performs as Chester Missing in Missing at the National Arts Festival, in Grahamstown, 08 July 2015. The puppet performed to a full house. (Photo: CuePix/Tamani Chithambo)

Just in case my isiXhosa middle name may have distracted you: yes, this is another column by another white guy with another original take on white privilege. Once again, another one of us would like to take up even more of your time to talk about us. Let’s put white people in the spotlight. You know, for a change.

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Conrad Koch performs as Chester Missing in Missing at the National Arts Festival, in Grahamstown, 08 July 2015. The puppet performed to a full house. (Photo: CuePix/Tamani Chithambo)

“Cue are you here?” Chester bellowed from the stage, “You must give this a shit review,” he continued unapologetically. Cue the audience continuing the chorus of laughs they sang all night, and Conrad Koch urging his friends to calm down – as he had done all night.

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conrad

Conrad Koch is the ventriloquist behind Chester Missing, one of South Africa’s better-known political analysts. Like most comedians in this country he talks about race – a lot. Missing, his new show at the Festival, is filled with barbs about colonialism and racial profiling, mostly delivered by Chester, a racially ambiguous puppet. Koch, though, is white, and deeply aware of it. Shortly before his opening performance on Wednesday night, which also featured two additional puppets, neither as funny as Chester, he sat down with Cue to talk about trolls (the virtual ones), satire, and white audiences not quite getting what he’s about.

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