Video

Film: Protest Theatre In Zimbabwe

[embed width="620"][/embed]


Beginning in the late nineties, Zimbabwe has been mired in an inferno of political repression and unremitting economic hardship. Over the last decade or so an estimated 3 million people, a quarter of the country’s population, have fled the troubled nation’s borders to settle in neighbouring states or abroad. For the many that stayed behind it has been a time of quiet despair; of gritting teeth and holding onto the ledge.

Robert Mugabe, the country’s autocratic leader since Independence from white-settler colonialism in 1980, has over the years systematically clamped down the space where voices of dissent – artistic, political and intellectual – can articulate themselves.  In Staging Protest, a forthcoming documentary on protest theatre in Zimbabwe, first-time filmmakers Imraan Jeeva and Vinayak Bhardwaj look at how theatre is used to confront truths that have largely remained unspoken for fear of retribution.

The playwrights, actors and directors of these politically charged plays risk limbs and jail time but in order to understand the motivation why; the words of holocaust survivor and writer Primo Levi may hold the answer: “for these survivors” he says, “remembering is a duty. They do not want to forget, and above all they do not want the world to forget, because they understand that their experiences were not meaningless.”

Music
(Youtube)

9 Must-Hear Songs From Ghana's Buzzing Drill Scene

We give you the rundown on Ghana's drill movement, Asakaa, and the most popular songs birthed by it.

Red bandanas, streetwear, security dogs, and gang signs. If you've been paying any attention to the music scene in Ghana over the past few months, then by now you would have noticed the rise of a special hip-hop movement. The movement is called Asakaa, and it's the Ghanaian take on the Chicago-born subgenre of hip-hop called drill music. It's fresh, it's hot, it's invigorating and it's nothing like anything you've seen before from this part of the world.

The pioneers of Asakaa are fondly referred to by the genre's patrons as the Kumerica boys, a set of budding young rappers based in the city of Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. They came into the limelight towards the end of 2020, and have been dropping banger after banger since then, topping several charts and racking up millions of views collectively. The rap is charismatic, the visuals are captivating, and their swag is urban. Characterized by Twi lyrics, infectious hooks, and sinister beats, the allure and appeal of both their art and their culture is overflowing.

"Sore," one of the benchmark songs of the movement, is a monster hit that exploded into the limelight, earning Kumerican rapper Yaw Tog a feature on Billboard Italy and a recent remix that featured Stormzy. "Ekorso" by Kofi Jamar is the song that took over Ghana's December 2020, with the video currently sitting at 1.3 million views on YouTube. "Off White Flow" is the song that earned rapper Kwaku DMC and his peers a feature on Virgil Abloh's Apple Music show Televised Radio. These are just a few examples of the numerous accolades that the songs birthed from the Asakaa movement have earned. Ghana's drill scene is the new cool, but it isn't just a trend. It's an entire movement, and it's here to stay.

Want to get familiar? Here we highlight the most prominent songs of the Asakaa movement that you need to know. Here's our rundown of Ghana's drill songs that are making waves right now. Check them out below.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

Listen to Berri's Infectious Afropop Single 'Fire'

The emerging singer makes a confident debut.