Arts and culture Community Entertainment

The Stephen J Chifunyise International Theatre Festival ends in triumph

Stephen Chifunyise

The Rooftop Promotions organized; Stephen J Chifunyise International Theatre Festival has come to an end with great successes.

The festival which ran from 4 to 10 April 2020 went digital and it was streamed on digital platforms; YouTube and Facebook due to the lockdown necessitated by the spread of the global COVID-19 pandemic (Coronavirus). Despite its hectic programming coupled with numerous adjustments due to this global pandemic, the curators in various countries only needed to embrace the situation and work tirelessly to create the festival atmosphere. 

Countries which took part in this festival include Malawi, Zambia and Tanzania. Since the pandemic prompted restrictions on travels, all the artists and curators from these respective countries could not facilitate their travels to Zimbabwe but had to urgently make arrangements to meet the dates.

However, the festival is still available freely or as an open-source on Rooftop Promotions’ YouTube channel. Festival director Daves Guzha reiterated the organizing committee’s dutiful firm support of the digital way of implementation. Guzha also added that the creative industry needs to do more especially during this period of lockdowns where the general public consumes more due to its stagnancy.

“The entertainment industry is challenged to do more during these trying times of this global COVID-19 pandemic because people still need entertainment as they endure the lockdowns.

“This should not end here, but the digital space should be utilized to entertain the public,” said Guzha.

Plays of the late Stephen J Chifunyise like “Cultural Tourism”, “Lightees” and “Bullying” were staged by the little kids of CHIPAWO. Artists in Zambia did a fantastic job to remember the late Chifunyise by performing “Love at the Crossroads”. The programming also included screenings for the late Chifunyise’s plays like “Rituals” and “Waiting for the Constitution”.

Meanwhile, Rooftop Promotions and the organizing committee thanked all the partners and all those who helped to put this successful work together.

While the containment of the COVID-19 remains unpredictable, Rooftop Promotions still have a bunch of online programs lined up.

Rooftop encouraged people to subscribe to their YouTube channel (Rooftop Promotions) and never miss notifications of their latest content.    

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende