The play that was Rumia Ndarama by Fanaka Arts Theatre


Jambo Mingi….

Jambo Sana…..

Jambo Kenya…..”

Fanaka Arts christened the masters of Gikuyu comedy staged their monthly play edition on the 15th-18th October at the Alliance Francaise. In my mind I could have sworn the poster read the Kenya National Theater. Until I checked the text to make a booking 30 mins to time and all my hopes of viewing the refurbished hall were thwarted. I am still waiting for the keys to be brought back remember this.

Set in a Makuti bar, the General, manager extraordinaire is busy on the final touches of the Mugithi night happening later in the evening as he waits for the star guest “Wangari wa Kibira” . The key drummer who is also an expert in making “mikonye” is too eager for the guest’s arrival that he false identifies the step-in-cleaning lady for the guest. As Gakii the step-in-cleaning lady puts it ” Since you have decided I am Wangari wa Kibira, who am I to refuse?”

Through the twists and turns that involve two cops, it turns out this is a scam by the  promoter “Cucu Manyanga” to fleece unknowing club managers by using artist’s as performing yet they are not scheduled to perform. That’s the twists whereas for the turn, it turns out the fake promoter is one of the cop’s mother. What to do?

The play organized as a crescendo(I know words)-gradually rose to roars and roars of laughter as we climaxed to the last scene.

One and a half hours later with the six-person cast, and the opening lines above which I truly loved, “Rumia Ndarama” produced by Warugu wa Ndung’u and directed by Njomo Nyathira had done its part in drumming my ribs.

As always I asked the person sited next to me how the play was and with a beam on his face, “It was fun, It was good…it was really Fun”.  There you have it


  • If some of the sentences here read as if they are direct translation, its because they are


  • I’ll also be sharing a few Kikuyu words or sayings I learn in these plays and call them “Twirute Gikuyu” (TG)
  • TG – “Miario miingi ni ya uthoni ugikua”

One thought on “The play that was Rumia Ndarama by Fanaka Arts Theatre

  1. Pingback: 360 degree turn kinda play. Hutia Ngoige by Johari Productions | Tales from Theatre Halls

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