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Thursday, March 22, 2012


Moving, affirmative and cathartic piece. (Review by Philisiwe Sithole)

High Heels With Balls is a play written and directed by DUT drama graduate Thabiso Radebe. It is about a young gay prostitute man trapped in the struggle of his identity and sexuality. Not being able to understand his purpose in society, he has lost a sense of belonging and he is questioning whether he will ever escape the trauma of not being accepted. This play is message-driven while it is also touching and heavily emotional, surrounding questions of homosexuality and human rights.

The set is minimal. In the centre there is a couch surrounded by clothes and condoms on the floor. An artist (Mgcini Mthupha) is drawing a sketch collaborating with powerful Zulu styled poetry (Nomandla Mchunu) who stands as a statue further up the stage. There is also a table filled with condoms emphasizing the themes of sexuality and love.

High Heels with Balls uses ropes in most segments of the play, symbolising death, abuse and the heaviness of the production. The silence in this piece creates empathy for Thabiso Radebe as he profoundly confronts his debility of uniqueness. Unashamedly filled with bravery and truth, he strips himself naked and voices the issue of gay and lesbian in a theatrical style.

Sadly, many South Africans still have a big issue about homosexuality, offering no tolerance or acceptance. Gays often experience outward criticism and abuse from homophobics.

This play is a moving, affirmative and cathartic piece suitable for a mature audience, it is beautifully presented and since it is Human Rights Month, it is a good play to visit.

High Heels with Balls runs in the DUT Art Gallery on the DUT Steve Biko campus until March 23. Entry R50. – Philisiwe Sithole