The Sunday News
Sandisiwe Gumbo, Sunday Life Reporter
THE highly anticipated KwaNtuthu Comedy Festival is set to return for its second edition from 26 to 28 October at the Bulawayo Theatre.
It would run under the theme “It’s On”.
Organisers are optimistic that this year’s festival will surpass the success of the previous edition in terms of attendance and publicity.
With a line-up of promising top-tier performances, including participation from local schools, the festival aims to provide a diverse range of humour and comedy-centred activities.
“We hope this year will be bigger than last year, a bigger crowd, and more publicity,” said Yananai Mavingire, the festival curator.
“The acts that have agreed to take part are promising top tier performances and we hope the line-up that has been chosen will deliver as expected. We are excited to have schools taking part and having young people that are happy to be entertained by programmes that are not harmful and that allow their talents to show and grow.”
One of the key highlights of the festival is an open mic show, where young up and coming comedians would be encouraged to showcase their talent. The organisers have taken it upon themselves to mentor the aspiring comedians and provide them with an opportunity to be part of the festival.
“We have been running a monthly open mic show and we always encourage young, up and coming comedians to come and give it a try,” said Mavingiri.
“Fortunately, through these open mics, we’ve met a number of young people who want to be comedians and we’ve been mentoring them and including them in our festival plans.
“They’ll get to meet other comedians at the festival and have sit downs with them and see them on stage. We hope this encourages them to take comedy further.”
The KwaNtuthu Comedy Festival prides itself on being a family-friendly event, ensuring that all performances are suitable for audiences of all ages. That approach aims to create an inclusive environment where everyone can enjoy a good laugh together.
“KwaNtuthu Comedy Festival is family friendly, all ages are invited and we promise to deliver clean intelligent, comedy that anyone and everyone can enjoy.
“Our success can only come about from people attending and giving us feedback so we grow the festival into something the whole city can be proud of and can bring people to our beautiful city,” stated the curator.
“With the theme ‘It’s On’, we came and learnt it’s game on this edition, the festival aims to capture the spirit of excitement and anticipation surrounding this year’s event. Attendees can expect a wide range of comedy styles and performances that cater for different tastes and preferences.”
Call outs for participation were made early this year and a number of responses from different comedians and organisations were received.
Those who aligned with the vision of clean witty family friendly comedy and those who best represented their respective towns and countries were selected.
“We have many different acts from different countries coming to perform this year, each comes with a very unique take on comedy. We also have young people performing theatre and showcasing a short film they wrote themselves.” Mavingire said.
Acts from South Africa, Botswana and Zambia are expected to grace the occasion.
As the festival approaches, organisers are working tirelessly to ensure a seamless experience for both performers and attendees.
With the support of sponsors and the dedication of the organising team, the KwaNtuthu Comedy Festival is set to become a highlight on the comedy calendar.
The festival is supported by Culture Fund and European Union.