The Playhouse Company is set to hold auditions for Duma Ndlovu’s The Game and is calling hundreds of young talented actresses to enter.
The Playhouse Company is holding auditions for celebrated playwright and director, Duma Ndlovu’s play, The Game, which will form part of the Company’s 20th annual South African Women’s Arts Festival from 9 to 13 August.
Set in a fictitious Middleburg prison in 1993, The Game takes place as Nelson Mandela and many other political prisoners have been released from jail by the apartheid government and the country is preparing for the first democratic election ever.
To celebrate this milestone, prison officials at Middleburg prison decide to release one of the female prisoners. But there’s a catch: the warder informs them that the captain has given instructions that the female prisoners should decide among themselves as to who is to be released.
This, of course, sparks off a major argument as the women all argue that they could not vote for someone else when all of them desperately want to go home. This results in one of the prisoners coming up with a game that will allow the decision to be made. The end result is a call for unity in a play written by Ndlovu in 1996.
The Playhouse Company is looking for experienced actresses to play the following characters. The three other roles have been cast.
- Bhanoyi (20)
A spunky 20-year-old juvenile, who is the life and soul of the party in jail. She was tried as an adult and convicted when she was 17. She seems not to have a care in the world, and seems to enjoy herself in jail. Obviously she gets into everyone’s nerves with her pranks and childishness.
- Madombolo (between 65 and 70)
She is a grandmotherly figure who looks like she does not belong in jail. She appears delusional and is always on her own. She seems slow and is usually the last person to get the joke. Half the time she is reminiscing about her children and seems to be talking to “unseen voices” a lot.
- Pretty (between 25 and 30)
Pretty is a product of rape. Her white father raped her domestic worker mother, hence her looks. She is half white, but speaks SiSwati because she was raised by her mother in Nelspruit (Naspoti). She is a sex worker and has been hardened by the streets. She is a bit on the dare-devilish side, a child of the streets.
- Stru’s God (between 50 and 60)
Stru’s God is a street-wise older woman. She has spent her entire adult life in and out of prison. She is a pickpocket and is what is usually referred to in the streets as uKleva. She is a bull fighter and does not take nonsense from other prisoners. She is the most experienced prisoner and she carries that around with her. She has been trying to find God now that it is clear that crime will not win her a lottery ticket.
- Thembi (between 40 and 45)
Thembi was dealt a serious blow by life when a group of teenagers came to her house and took her son away to burn him during the turbulent days of the 80’s. She was a church-going, God-loving woman, but the experience of watching her son being burnt to death traumatised her and brought out a side of her that previously did not exist. She went to consult with sangomas who told her to exorcise the demons by watching one of the other children being tortured and burnt to death. In one of life’s cruel blows, she and the children who torched the later victim were all arrested, whereas the boys who torched her son were never apprehended.
Only experienced professional candidates will be considered. Each auditionee needs to prepare two three-minute monologues for her audition: one that is similar to the character for which she is auditioning; and one that contrasts with the character for which she is auditioning. Each auditionee needs to bring a CV with them, as well as a head and shoulders picture of herself to the audition
Auditions will take place on Tuesday 26 April. To book an audition, telephone Kipi Skweyiya on 031 369 9463 between 09h00 and 12h00, and between 14h00 and 16h00 from 18 to 22 April. No voice messages will be accepted.