Actress Kharyshi Wiginton, performing in Colours of the Diaspora. She might be too much for most people, but I couldn’t get enough of her.
Last night I was invited to see a show called Colours of the Diaspora at the Market Theatre Laboratory. The Laboratory, affiliated with the iconic Market Theatre, is an experimental theatre venue and drama school for underprivileged artists, located inside a cavernous converted bus factory in Newtown.
Inside the bus factory.
Entrance to “the Lab”.
I’m not an experienced theatre critic and I have no idea how to coherently describe Colours of the Diaspora. I’m just going to throw out a few impressions.
Colours of the Diaspora is about being a black woman. It’s about being fat. It’s about being South African, and it’s about being American. But you don’t have to be any of those things to relate to what these women say.
When Kharyshi talked about taking shelter from her problems behind food, I knew what she was saying. When Napo said she wanted a man — a CEO/CFO/COO to buy her a car and a house with a view — I heard her. When she complained that her butt is so big that it prevents her from lying down flat on her back, I heard that too.
When Kharyshi reflected upon losing her mother — wishing her mom would come back so she could memorize the contours of her face — I understood just a little too well.
Kharyshi talks about life as a fat woman (among many other things) in America.
Colours of the Diaspora is about friendship, loss, and loneliness. It’s about honesty. It’s about poetry and music and dance. It’s about beauty, love, and sex. Yep, even fat women have sex. And the fat woman in this show, American performer Kharyshi Wiginton, is not afraid to tell you about it. She’ll make you blush, and she’ll probably make you cry. She’ll definitely make you laugh.
Colours of the Diaspora features well-known South African actress/poet Napo Masheane. Napo’s mesmerizing words and movements are the highlight of the show.
Even when Napo spoke another language, I understood what she said.
According to her website, Napo has also done a show called My Bum Is Genetic Deal With It. I want to see that one next!
Hopefully you get the idea. This is a no-frills kind of show. There are no fancy costumes or sets — just women on a stage, talking about life. I was personally very interested in what they had to say, and the way they said it.
Colours of the Diaspora is playing for three nights only, which means you’ve got two more chances to see it — tonight and tomorrow. Tickets are R80 and can be purchased on Computicket. Go with an open mind. You won’t regret it.