If you love watching kikuyu plays or you have been to KNT(Kenya National Theatre) and you have never heard about Johari five-changed to Johari Pro and now back to Johari Five- or you have not watched any/many of their plays,its time you got yourself a new set of friends.
Today’s post is on my journey with Johari and this has nothing to do with the hundreds of kilometres I have travelled to come watch the groups stagings when not in Nairobi but from the fact that 2 years down the line, am still standing to be counted(from that statement one may think I am one of the cast but I assure you I am not. I am more of a groupie because fan cannot even begin to describe it). I have been there from the first production “mburi cia ngoma” in 2012 waaaaay back when teacher Wanjiku was still Wanjiku Tharao, Maina Olwenya was yet to be called kaka, and Sam Kihiu had not disappeared from stage, and we are still travelling (I have to use such words because am describing a journey) together even after you promise us one show a month and we are still waiting two months later after “cimburia wega” , but who is counting?
In a 2.5-3hrs show, Johari will have covered all current happenings in the country-talk of nishike by Sauti sol,Samuel Wanjiru,Illicit brews,TPF- and still manage to deliver a message while at it. Their plays are a definition of what a blend of riddles, sarcasm ,humor and current events yields and having tasted that, all I keep repeating is call me when you are back and,I always return.
Why the “my” in this journey is I feel we don’t need to have verbal exchanges to communicate. Sample this, I have said before I love a play with many actors and on this front, trust Johari never to disappoint. In any given Johari play, an actor will have changed to 3 or more different roles and in each its like the previous was just a rehearsal of the current. I can write here with confidence that hilarious and Johari can be used in a sentence interchangeably to bring out the same meaning and that you can confirm in their next production
To say I laugh until my ribs ache does not bring out the magnitude of what really happens because I do that 100 times. This would explain why a while back a lady behind me thought I would die of laughter. In her words: “Lady to neighbor: Aki si huyu madam atakufa kwa kucheka.
TRANSLATION. Yep. you read that right. One word statement Ever heard Grenade by Bruno mars or someone like you by Adele in kikuyu? NO? I have(hehehehe) anyway those and a few others translated songs make up the Johari cuisines and lately, they have added H_art the band on their menu to cement their awesomeness(H_art the band needs no definition. That they have done on their own)
I would compare Johari to a kikuyu heartstrings Kenya( they stage their plays for two consecutive weeks) and this comparison may be from the fact that they have similar styles and half the cast is in both groups productions.
This post was supposed to be my journey with Johari incase I got carried away and may not appear so, but I will be back to talk about some of their plays.
For those who may not know, we sing the national anthem in kikuyu just like its done in English for the English plays.
|Am out for now but ill be back.