Music Is A Weapon, Theatre Empowers
Fela said music is a weapon and Angelique Kidjo said it is a window to the soul. Two very powerful statements about the power of music that I agree with. Watching these two very different documentaries exploring the arts and its ability to influence people got me thinking because they opened my eyes to other people’s reality. The two ladies are blind but refuse to be limited by their disability. Their music serves as their eyes and voice but what’s more astonishing is unrelenting fight to carry on with the work of their father and push to make it happen. I best not give it away but watch this to the very end, you will be touched.
I remember the first time I saw Sizwe Banzi Is Dead by Athol Fugard, it was an eye opener. I think it helped me to understand the restrictions placed on people lives by apartheid better than any film had done up to that point. Films tell you a story with all the props/effects used to make it more powerful. Film is a medium I respect but there is something about theatre and the use of stage to expose, examine and explore the gritty reality of life, especially when injustice is at the heart of a society. It empowers you as an individual, gives you a reason to question the status quo but it also breaks down barriers and brings people together to stand up and fight for a common goal, change to their situation. The Free Theatre of Belarus is one I have heard of but I am yet to see any of their productions. However, this edition of Artscape by Al Jazeera puts things into perspective. Interesting to realise the things we take for granted sometimes.