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  • Almasi M.Ndangili

Why Ngugi Wathiong'o I'll Mary When I want Play is a Must-Attend.

From Kenya's most decorated writers, Ngugi Wa Thiong'o Co-Authored Ngugi Wa Mirii, 'I'LL MARRY WHEN I WANT, is returning to the theatre from 12th-19th May 2022.

Ngaahika Ndeenda was first written in Kikuyu. The first performance in theatre was staged way back in 1977, leading to Wathiong'os detention for a year without trial by the Kenyan government under President Moi's regime.

If you are not old enough, you will struggle to get this. Why would a play get burned and the producer sent to detention for a year? Here are some critical highlights that fueled its burn for that long and author's detention.

  • The Play attacked capitalism, religious hypocrisy, and corruption among the new economic elite of Kenya back then. That did not go down well with the late President Moi as he believed Prof.Ngugi was sponsored by his political competitors to paint his government in a bad light, and Moi did what he could do best, i.e. to detail and later send him to exile.

45 years later, history repeats itself in a big way, and thespians in Kenya have many reasons for attending this because it is way beyond entertainment per se.

a)The play will reflect the political landscape transformation from time and age when people could not express themselves freely to the modern era when anyone can openly challenge the government or the President, thanks to our democratic right of free expression.

b)Secondly, this Play rekindles the great memories and heritage of the Kenyan Entertainment sector. Where were you in 1977? Imagine if somebody attended the performance in 1977 and he is coming back to the theatre 45 years later to watch the same story by different casts? I think it will rekindle fantastic memories.

If that is not enough; this is about it as the James Bond series. Its heritage is finessed and served as an old whine that has stayed in the store for 45 years.

Mum, I can't miss this!


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