Play for girls of the rainbow

A beautiful fusion between dance, poetry, drama and music is what you can expect in For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf.

The play by the University of the Free State (UFS) Drama Department is a production by Marijda Kamper.

The play can be seen on Wednesday, 12 September, to Friday, 14 September, from 09:30 in the Scaena Theatre at the UFS.

Those on stage are second-year drama students at the UFS.

The play, a choreopoem, explores issues women all over the world are struggling with, such as abuse, identity crises, the coming of age and self-love, empowerment and depression.

“Written in 1975 by American author Ntozake Shange, it is today just as relevant as then,” said Kamper.

For Colored Girls uses 19 poems by seven women who experience different individual problems.

Each of these characters go through a journey of their own, but come to realise that they are not alone.

While they are all confronted with similar issues, they are not as different from each other after all.

“she’s half-notes scattered

without rhythm no tune

sing her sighs

sing the song of her possibilities

sing a righteous gospel

let her be born”

– “Lady in Brown”

The characters’ names reflect the colours of the rainbow: Lady in Red, Blue, Brown, Orange, Yellow, Purple and Green.

American playwright, poet and feminist activist fighting for the rights of black women, Ntozake Shange, was born in Trenton New Jersey, as Paulette Williams.

When she separated from her first husband, she often attempted to commit suicide. However, focusing her anger and hurt on the limitations that black women have, she was able to regain her inner strength.

She then took her African name from South African friends at the time – Ntozake Shange – which means “she who comes with her own things “and “she who walks like a lion”.

Being an educator, performer, director, writer and committed solo spoken word artist, she said “the poems find their way through me to the audience”.

Shange was so nervous in the beginning to put these poems into a performance because “I was a performance poet, not a theatre artist”.

The age restriction for the play is 16 years. Tickets are available at Computicket at R40 for adults, R30 for students and learners, and R25 for pensioners. Call Computicket on
086-1915-8000 for bookings.