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BAYEDE SHAKA (article first published : 2001-02-15)

Edmond Mhlongo and his K-Cap Alive Kids are staging a dramatic large-scale musical at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre from March 5 to 25. Titled The Spear is Born - Bayede Shaka, it pays tribute to the life of influential Zulu leader, King Shaka.

The hard-working, dedicated and busy Umlazi Durban-based theatre group has received international acclaim with this production after travelling to the Royal National Theatre and Lewisham Theatres in the United Kingdom and performing at the WOMAD festival in Reading - and there are more international tour options on the horizon.

The play has been described as having echoes of being a South African King Arthur story, with uShaka's magic spear having perceived similar powers to King Arthur's mighty sword - Excalibur. The production celebrates the life of uShaka as a Zulu hero, a builder of the Zulu kingdom and a promoter of African unity. The legendary king is portrayed as a respected and gifted African legend who initiated the very first united state of Africa.

The Spear is Born: Bayede Shaka is performed by a 22-strong internationally travelled cast featuring the K-Cap Alive Kids actors, dancers, drummers and a band of experienced musicians.

K-Caps is known for We Are Alive about the plight of street-children, Cry Not Child which dealt with the effects of landmines on children in southern Africa and Bosnia, and Our Voice, Our Rights which creates awareness of child-labour.

Book at the door or through Computicket, credit cards on (031) 304-2753, or at http://www.computicket.com. There are special schools performances - call Chris Majozi on (031) 309-6530.




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