It is entertainment for the fine palates; dudes and babes that appreciate the art of communicating using the spoken word. Last Friday evening, patrons at the National theatre had their hands full as young minds from three generations – the original lantern poets, university students and vacists – put on a well-attended recital.
They were four hours of more than 40 poems (I lost count) that had been packaged in a drama. Of course, there were comedy interludes done by Urban TV’s Business Unusual presenter, Daniel Omara, and a spirited recital by Ghana’s Big Brother Africa Hotshot Kacey Moore.
Titled What Shall We Name This Child? the session featured a range of topics such as death, politics, technology and heritage, among others. They were presented in poems such as Tomorrow, Easy To Forget and Naked, among others.
The recital challenged the audience to reflect on our lifestyles, the culture we have abandoned, Twitter, sex, music, makeup, gossip, news, and then ask ourselves if we still know who we really are. Thus, the show title – What Shall We Name This Child?
The three-part show was captivating that even when one did not understand all the poems, there was something to keep one involved. From the young reminding the elderly to stop being judgmental, to referring to Uganda as a lost girl, the recitals were enchanting.
The guest of the day, Kacey, was worth writing home about. His poetry has often left him in trouble, especially the Sex Music, which rubbed rappers in South Africa, where he is based, the wrong way – one promising to shoot him. His three recitals included Sex Music, Xenophobia and America. Sex Music will indeed get all artistes shifting in their seats for the way it goes after their art.
Cleverly, he is not lashing at artistes for doing music that preaches sex but, rather, music that can’t stand the test of time – music that leaves the scene as quick as a one-night stand. Another recital that got the audience excited was the politically-charged Tomorrow; it talked directly to many that paid their Shs 10,000 to attend the show.
Kacey, popular in last year’s Big Brother house for his poetry talent and friendship with Stella Nantumbwe ‘Ellah’, revealed that in South Africa, poetry is a big thing with enough following. He is embarking on a tour next month to further popularise it to the rest of Africa like Uganda where poets do it as a hobby.
In fact, many of the night’s performers were employees in other fields including journalism, law and medicine.