Circus of Ubuntu: JKUAT Drama Club

By Maroa Lucas,


JKUAT Drama Club is a society that nurtures art among the student fraternity. It is premised on encouraging human interaction beyond the class as a way of building the social character of young people. The club’s members engage in acting, spoken word, painting, singing, instrumentals, and all sorts of performed art.

On Friday 18th Feb 2022, the Drama Club organized a Drama event  that brought together many students with various performances to entertain and enlighten the audience, ‘Circus of Ubuntu’ being the main show of the day. The play, written and directed by Ochieng Migeni, is an invitation to critique African democracy and her leadership. It follows the happenings in a young country, Ubuntu, whose leaders are torn between selling their circus to foreigners and preserving it as an ancestral shrine. Through the play, we witness how greed and corruption can destabilize a country and retard development. It also speaks to issues like male chauvinism, FGM, the notion of dictatorship, tribalism and neocolonialism. The play calls on the public to engage in healthy politics and shun divisive elections, making it pretty relevant now that we’re nearing the electioneering period.

The students, Steve Odewa, who stood out in his role as King Kizangila the Second, a forward-thinking Ubuntu patriot who has his people’s interests at heart Kunta Monjan and Nicholus Muindi also enthralled everybody, acting as Churchill and Winston respectively. We cannot fail to mention Churchill and Subira who also wowed the audience with their unique salsa rendition. And finally, hats off to Makena Njeri who understood her assignment as the Oracle, a voice of reason and the bridge between the people of Ubuntu and the gods.

The top performers will be featured in Mwenjoyo, a play that runs throughout the weekend. The Club also plans to have a boot camp training session at the Rowallan Camp, to further help the students hone their skills. All participants were awarded certificates as a merit of participation.

An audience of students at the JKUAT Drama club play at the Assembly Hall on Friday 19th February 2022.
An audience of students at the JKUAT Drama club play at the Assembly Hall on Friday 18th February 2022.

Drama Club offers more than just nurturing art. Of course, their primary focus is helping students identify and grow their talents. But besides this, the club also organizes team building sessions, peer counseling, and networking programs to encourage holistic growth. To ensure that participating students do not neglect academics, the club aligns its programs with the school’s calendar and encourages members to take books seriously. The club is also big on mental awareness and using art as a way of dealing with social menaces such as various forms of addictions and that negatively drain the energy and productive years of young people.

“We are keen on nurturing our students’ talents and making sure that they have fun as a way of breaking the monotony of studying all the time,” sentiments made by the VC, Prof. Victoria Ngumi while addressing the 1st year students during the last clubs and society awareness day.

 

For those who wish to join the drama club, recruitment is done through auditions any time at the beginning of the semester and anytime a project/event pops up. The auditions are always posted on the club’s social media pages. Members meet at least three times a week. Weekly meetings involve monologue competitions, notes-sharing, and discussions on the state of art in the country. The club also works with Students Art Development Association (STADA) to organize weekly Usanii Live events at the Students’ Center every Thursday. The next big event—The Original Sin—is scheduled for 24th march, 2022 at the Assembly Hall.

 

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