Politics and art rarely mix wonderfully well. Some would argue that the former ought to remain in the halls of white houses and old grey buildings while the latter should have the right to spill from galleries and theatres onto the streets until it’s done its job in influencing the former. If that makes sense.
But politics in the form of historic telling for the stage, that works very well indeed, as has been proven in productions from Hamilton to Clinton: The Musical, even Cats to Rent when you really think about it…
Next on the poli-art agenda is Madiba, a musical about the struggles and successes of Nelson Mandela, visionary game-changer and one-time leader of South Africa.
For a story filled with delicate subjects and issues, Madiba is one very joyous affair, pulsating with African dance (from traditional to hip-hop whose heart, really, is in African music) and glimmering with vibrant visuals.
The narrative charts the struggles and conflicts amidst the activists and racists in an unsteady South Africa pre-freedom and racial alignment, namely from the early Fifties to the late Eighties.
There is an unyielding crusade for love, fights for reconciliation and, ultimately, a freedom of sorts that sees black Africans and white Africans finally getting along, working together, and getting the most out of multicultural life.
While accents occasionally get in the way in the script and songs in the story, and where it could possibly have done with a nice giant surtitle or two (if not for the sake of art, simply to understand some of the main messages clearly), all up it is a most enjoyable production.
Get your tickets now to one of the few final nights, and experience an awe-inspiring story from modern history. Antonino Tati
‘Madiba’ is on at Crown Theatre, Burswood until January 12, 2019.
Book here for tickets or phone 136 100.