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Friday, November 16, 2018


(Melusi Buthelezi who narrates “The Bastard Child”)

There are beautiful comic moments within this serious drama. (Review by Siza KaMnisi Mthembu)

Tell A Story Productions presented Inja Yenja Enjeni at the DUT Upton Residence. The production is written and directed by Senzo Mabanga, DUT Drama and Production Studies Graduate.

Inja yenja Enjeni is a one man show about a young Sifiso who suffers from Dissociative Identity Disorder caused by physical, emotional and mental abuse at the hands of his “father”. The story is carefully narrated by Melusi Buthelezi (a DUT Drama Student) who plays multiple characters from Sifiso to his Father, and other cameo characters on the street, Shebeen and Esigodlweni sesangoma (traditionalist homestead).

There are beautiful comic moments within this serious drama. Buthelezi must watch rushing his speech as some dialogue is swallowed. There is a good use of props to symbolise actions, times and characters. The set is simple yet so effective with beautiful isiNdebele colours, while musicians are neatly placed on stage as background voices and images.

Sfundo Ndlovu, Kholeka Gumede, Nhlakanipho Ngcobo and Sbonelo Ndlovu (UKZN Students) add an excellent feel as they harmonise throughout the performance. It is always good to see graduates from different institutions collaborating.

Inja yenja Enjeni comes out at a time when South Africa is preparing for the Annual Campaign of No Violence against the Abuse of Women and Children. These are some of the underline themes in the story: HIV/AIDS, rape, cancer and alcohol abuse.

Senzo Mabanga must be commended as a young upcoming director as he is able to convert any space for performance, working under difficult conditions where Durban artists are struggling for space and financial support.

Inja Yenja Enjeni has two more performances - November 16 and 17 at 19h00 - at Upton Residence, Durban University of Technology, Steve Biko Road. Tickets R60 available at the door at. There is a group discussion after each performance. - Siza KaMnisi Mthembu.