When thinking of the South Luangwa National Park in Zambia various images come to mind. Lions. Elephants. Leopards. Trees. Theatre. Theatre?
South Luangwa National Park, celebrated for its abundance of wildlife, is now a destination for cultural attractions as well. A small group of actors from the villages surrounding the Park have created a vibrant blend of traditional song and dance, puppetry, physical theatre and storytelling. The group is Seka, which means ‘to laugh’ in the local language.
These are people for whom living with wild animals is a daily reality. They care about the natural resources that surround them and believe in educating their peers to conserve wildlife.
Seka is headed up by Miranda Guhrs and Msatero Tembo. Miranda is the granddaughter of the late conservationist Norman Carr – whose legacy is the South Luangwa National Park. She has grown up in the area and is fluent in the local language. Msatero Tembo started out as a small time actor in dusty Chipata town and was ‘discovered’ by South African Company Theatre for Africa. He has since toured Europe, Africa and the United States three times over with various productions. The team of actors are a diverse group of people from single mothers to reformed poachers to royalty in line to the chieftainship throne. They have enchanted audiences in villages and at international environmental conferences.
Kusanga – a tale of family, animals and life’s lessons. A man teaches his niece the ways of old and how to gain wisdom and understanding by observing the animals, trees, insects and birds of the bush that surround them. The child learns lessons from the cunning honey badger and honey-guide team, from the optimistic dung beetle, the patient heron, the stubborn warthog and many many more!
Want to invest in the people of South Luangwa? Buy a performance of Seka’s HIV/AIDS awareness play. For just $200 the group will perform to an audience of more than 200 people on the importance of knowing your status, and protecting against infection.
Now you too will get a chance to see this group in action! A must see for anyone visiting this beautiful Valley! To contact the team visit the Sensitisation and Education through Kunda Arts website or send the team an e-mail at [email protected]