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NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

OPENING OF MUSHO (article first published : 2008-01-7)

The complimentary whiskey served by attractive and polite young hosts certainly set the tone for a festive Musho festival! It was wonderful to have a full Kwasuka theatre and a very attentive and responsive audience for this opening performance. Here's hoping their appetites have been whetted and this support continues for the rest of the festival.

The Life and Work of Petrovic Petar is a brave step into multi-media theatre. The almost bare stage with the cleverly draped tent - which also serves as the screen for projections, a variety of props/costumes and the screen for shadow theatre - in no way prepares you for the imaginative, amusing and sometimes bizarre adventure ahead! The adventure unfolds somewhat fragmented at first as we enter the strange world of young Petar, but having grasped his excitement at living in Africa, we are taken through a number of escapades as he desperately tries to Africanise himself. An excellent interpretation of colonization using the chalk map and wonderful, simple movement, was a highlight.

Jason Potgieter excels as he sustains the intensity and easily slips from phase to phase of this adventure. In the heat of the Kwasuka, I am sure he felt the effects of the parched desert firsthand! However, in spite of the heat, his concentration did not waver and he succeeded in creating imaginative scenes with clever movement and excellent facial expressions.

The projections mostly worked very well and the positioning of some of the images was outstanding. A pity about the computer blurb which popped up every now and then.

The Musho festival is a showcase for new, interesting and challenging performances. This had all of these aspects. Well directed by Sanjin Muftic and superbly performed by Jason Potgieter, this was a great way to start the festival! - Dawn Haynes (artSMart Live Wire)




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