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SHWELE BAWO! (article first published : 2006-08-6)

Running as part of the Playhouse Company’s International Women’s Arts Festival is Shwele Bawo! (A Grave Injustice!) by Motshabi Tyelele and directed by Lynne Maree with a set designed by Sarah Roberts.

Nominated for Best New SA Play, Best Set Design and Best Performance by a Lead Actress for the 2004 Naledi Awards, Motshabi Tyelele won the 2004 Naledi Award for Best performance by a Lead Actress for her outstanding role in this one- woman play Shwele Bawo.

Popularly known as Thando in the local sitcom Suburban Bliss, Sophie in Generations and Eve in Madam and Eve. Motshabi has worked extensively as an actor in film, television and theatre. Her recent television appearances were in the popular children’s programme Takalani Sesame, Soul City 6 and Yizo Yizo 3.

The story is set in the dark, wardrobe sized cell of the South African maximum-security prison where a faded cry comes from a young woman in her prime. A perishing flower involuntarily faced with no future amongst the ones of her kind! The situation that inevitably leads to a tussle amongst what one was taught, what one learned, believes and perceives.

This is the story of a grave injustice - a wife convicted on trumped-up charges for an alleged murder of her abusive husband: An indictment of society. Despite her plea for innocence the media and the public ignored her. After two years in the dock, not for herself but for the sake of future generations, she calls the vicious news dogs to tell her story - the other side. This time, they will listen!

Shwele Bawo! holds up a mirror to contemporary society. Moral regeneration, traditional values, modern attitudes, the role of the media, the justice system – are some of the issues which come under the spotlight in this play about Dikeledi Nkabinde – a woman jailed for a crime she “had to commit”.

There will be performances of Shwele Bawo! (A Grave Injustice!) at The Playhouse from August 3 to 13. Book at Computicket or Playhouse Dial-A-Seat on 031 369 9444.




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