2018 Press Release



“on Migration and the search for Identity”

Bayimba Cultural Foundation and the Sundance Institute East Africa proudly announces the 5th Edition of the annual Kampala International Theatre Festival. The Festival shall take place from the 23rd to 25th November, 2018 at the Uganda Museum with celebrated playwrights, actors, directors, costume and stage designers.

This edition of the festival programme is Directed by Deborah Asiimwe of Sundance Institute and Faisal Kiwewa of Bayimba Cultural Foundation and curated by Herman Kabubi and Annika Rachor will feature productions from Iran, India, South Africa, Uganda, UK and USA.

Whereas the Kampala Theatre Festival serves as a platform for ground breaking playwrights, directors, actors and designers, the 2018 edition sets a new bar that will take theatre funs and audiences through a conversational experience on topics of Migrations, geo-politics, injustice as it is known in the west as well as the search for Identity.

Tickets go for: 50k for Full Festival pass, 20k day pass and 10k Students


Arrest the poem

A normal day at the ‘KATALE’ market place is interrupted by protest poets marching while reciting poems about how the market-place has oil. Commander ‘Common Sense’ orders Captain ‘Kill Me Quick’ and the Chairman to arrest the poems before they can cause more havoc. How shall they execute this order? How does one arrest a poem?

Explored is the struggle poets undergo as they seek to get their Art out there. Many are paid in exposure and platforms. Overtime this has reduced the Art to a less profitable one as compared to the rest in the same category.

A Ghost Story (Uganda)

When university student Opio is gunned down after his twin brother Ochen abandons him in the middle of a peaceful protest against the tyrannical turning of the country’s democratic government into a monarchy by its Head of State, Opio comes back as a ghost to haunt his brother, who he blames for his death.

ADITL ‘A Day In The Life’
(4orward Movement and Seemia Theatre, London, UK)

ADITL is a one man play which explores injustice within the justice system through the lens of a young black man wrongfully arrested and the tumultuous journey that ensues following his subsequent conviction.

It unapologetically examines our humanity, grappling with the issues of racism, identity, inequality, mental health and the trauma caused by the brutality and neglect that still (sub-consciously, consciously and even at times willfully) prevails to this day.

Evros I The Crossing River
(4orward Movement and Seemia Theatre, London, UK)

Evros I The Crossing River follows a young Syrian woman, Doaa, who dreams of a better life amongst a backdrop of war, terror and enduring love. Whilst planning her escape with her family, Doaa’s life changes when she meets Bassem.

We venture into the everyday of other families in extreme conditions and follow the performers as they ask “How can we walk in their shoes?”.

This immersive experience envelops you into the current refugee crisis playing with the idea of borders, challenging the idea of ‘us’ and ‘them’

When Swallows Cry
(A market theatre production, South Africa, a play by Mike Van Graan)

When Swallows Cry interweaves three stories set in Africa, or about African migrants and refugees.

One story features a Canadian teacher – initially assumed to be an American – who is captured by a group of bandits in a West African country.

A second story features two Zimbabwean teachers who flee the economic hardships of their country in a boat heading to Fiji where they will not require visas for at least three months.

The third story tells of a Somalian who leaves his war-torn country for South Africa, only to experience brutal xenophobic violence that obliges him to seek refuge in America.

These stories, featuring three actors playing contrasting characters in the three different play lets, are multi-layered and raise numerous themes about contemporary mobility.  The stories comment on each other, not necessarily in sequence, but as a whole.

No Rest in the Kingdom
(The Sandbox Collective from Bangalore, India)

No Rest in the Kingdom, a devised, physical theatre performance, came out of the need to have a conversation about the daily misogynies we are complicit in perpetrating. A comedy with music and movement, in which the performer plays four characters – two male, one female, and one feline.

No Rest in The Kingdom draws from the lives of urban characters who speak similar languages of consumerism and technology. Young and old men and women who are themselves baffled at this ‘gender question’ often find themselves walking on thin ice, oblivious, and sometimes very aware of the dangerous biases they hold.


Audience and Performers Without Borders (Mohsen Serji, Iran)

Mohsen Seraji is an Iranian Theatre director and also a playwright. He made his M.A in Theatre Directing and spezialized in Siyahbazi, a form of Iranian traditional theatre.

This workshop is introducing Iranian theatre to the Ugandan audience.

It will be held in two parts, an educational section and a practical section.  In the first part the “Takht-huiz” will be introduced to the participants. A practical part, which will be presented to a public audience will be the second part of the workshop.

Hills of Salt and Sugar (Uganda/USA)

This is a multimedia performance and discussion about memory, place, migration, and belonging. This performance is at once love letter to Kampala, its people, the vibrancy of everyday life; and elegy for the lifeways, knowledge, and people left behind in a global rush for “progress”.

The 5th edition of the festival is supported by principal partners Tebere Arts Foundation, Sundance Institute, DOEN Foundation and Africalia; sponsored by Uber and Simba Foods. 

“Kampala International Theatre Festival was developed, in part, by the Sundance Institute Theatre Program’s Post-Lab Support Funds”

For more information, contact Paul Lemi, Director Media and Marketing Bayimba Cultural Foundation: media@bayimba.org or 0759 288 789.

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